HARRISON, N.J. (AP) — Juan Pablo Angel converted a penalty kick in the 67th minute to lead the New York Red Bulls to a 2-1 win over the expansion Philadelphia Union on Saturday.
Angel's tiebreaking goal was his third of the season, all in the last two games, and franchise-best 48th of his career. Referee Kevin Stott awarded the penalty kick after Union defender Michael Orozco touched Joel Lindpere's long pass to Angel with his arm in the box.
The Red Bulls have won four of five after winning just five league games all last season. They didn't collect their fourth MLS victory last year until Aug. 30.
"It's phenomenal that we're getting the results," Angel said. "But there's a lot of work to do and a lot of improvement to be made. But in every aspect of the game, we're a much better team that we were last year."
The third regular-season match at Red Bull Arena, the club's new $200 million home, drew 15,619 fans.
Brian Nielsen started for the Red Bulls in his Major League Soccer debut. The 23-year-old midfielder, acquired on loan from Denmark's Vejle on April 15, practiced with New York for the first time on Friday. He was replaced by Sinisa Ubiparipovic in the 67th minute.
After a scoreless first half with not much action, Salou Ibrahim got the Red Bulls (4-1) on the board with an acrobatic goal, his first in the MLS. Jeremy Hall, New York's No. 1 draft pick last year, got the ball at the right flank and sent it across toward the goal. Ibrahim timed his leap perfectly to get a head on it as goalkeeper Chris Seitz collided with Union defender Jordan Harvey.
Philadelphia (1-3) tied it 9 minutes later. Union captain Alejandro Moreno made his way up the right side, past two Red Bulls defenders, and sent a low pass to the left corner of the goal mouth. Sebastien Le Toux knocked it past diving goalie Bouna Coundoul for his fourth goal of the season.
"Every game, we have so many people doing the dirty work," Red Bulls coach Hans Backe said. "Every game has been so difficult. I'm not totally pleased yet, because we need to improve in a lot of areas or I'm going to have a nervous breakdown if we keep playing close games like this. It's very hard to get a win, but we managed to get one."