This was the match that the Red Bulls needed to show that they were ready to make a big statement in. While this Chicago Fire side was just finishing out the string of a regular season that once again imploded and ended with a make shift starting eleven. But once again this is a stadium in MLS that they continued to have trouble winning in as this was the fifteenth attempt to get the full three points.
But after a fantastic regular season that started with a lot of issues from an tumultuous offseason into a big joy at the end, the New York Red Bulls won their 2nd Supporters Shield in three seasons with two separate Head Coaches and earning their first ever victory at Toyota Park defeated the Chicago Fire two goals to one.
The first goal was earned in the 8th minute and once again it would be Bradley Wright-Phillips who would easily put his foot on the ball and converted his 17th of the season. Sacha Kljestan delivers a solid corner that was deflected off the head of Sal Zizzo who found BWP and the Red Bulls took the one goal lead.
Another chance came to double the advantage as Mike Grella attacked the Chicago area and when Patrick Nyarko fouled him from behind in the 34th minute, Referee Ricardo Salazar blew his whistle and pointed to the spot. So it would be Kljestan to take the spot kick and in the 35th minute, putting all the pressure squarely on his shoulders Sacha Kljestan buries the ball past Alec Kann for the two goal lead.
While Gilberto converted a goal in the 78th minute to pull one back, that made the Red Bulls and their supporters earn squeaky bum time and that funny terrible feeling that there could be an issue if the Fire scored a second goal. FC Dallas was leading two goals to one on the San Jose Earthquakes on decision day and when four minutes was added in second half stoppage time you saw a side that was determined to keep that ball out and help Luis Robles make that dream happen. After Ricardo Salazar blew his whistle the New York Red Bulls earned the 2015 Supporters Shield and it did make its way to the visiting fans at Toyota Park.
But while this was the second time in three seasons that the Red Bulls have won the Supporters Shield, it was very ironic that they clinched both titles against the Chicago Fire when Mike Petke led them back in 2013 at Red Bull Arena & now in 2015 it would be Jesse Marsch that would lead this side to regular season glory on the road in Chicago.
Ever since Toyota Park was built the New York Red Bulls have failed in the first fourteen games to earn three points. So many times we have seen the Chicago Fire earn victories as the better side, getting help from the referee’s or the Red Bulls who would give goals away on poor defending or losing interest in these games.
Finally showing that they wanted to and needed to win in this final match of their regular season and the Shield on the line for this Red Bulls side broke a jinx that finally had to go away. Last season Mike Petke ended the Gillette Stadium jinx against the New England Revolution and this season it was Marsch who broke the Toyota Park jinx, even thought it took him a second chance to do it this season.
But now the Red Bulls will have a full week off and watch in a couple of days to see who will be their opponents after the Eastern Conference Wild Card games this coming Wednesday, but once again to all Red Bulls fans you can celebrate another title and hope there will be a solid run to the final.