Kansas City, KS – Red Bull New York jumped to the top of the Eastern Conference table on Saturday thanks to a 3-2 victory over Sporting Kansas City at Sporting Park.
Jonny Steele and Kei Kamara exchanged first-half goals, but the Red Bulls ultimately claimed all three points behind second-half strikes from Fabian Espindola and Lloyd Sam. Dom Dwyer pulled one back early on in stoppage time, but it proved to be nothing more than a consolation goal.
The win sees New York (11-7-5) improve to 38 points to move to the summit of the East, two points clear of Sporting (10-7-6).
New York got off the mark in the 27th minute when Dax McCarty threaded a through ball to Steele, who collected the delivery on the left flank before firing a powerful shot past Jimmy Nielsen at his near post.
Sporting pushed in search of a tying goal for the remainder of the opening period, eventually finding the equalizer one minute before the break. Soony Saad had his header parried away by Luis Robles, but the ball fell into the lap of Kamara, who was arriving to turn it into the net.
The Red Bulls regrouped on the other side of halftime and regained the lead in the 63rd minute. Sam released Espindola through on goal and the Argentine striker made the most of the chance by slotting a shot past Nielsen.
Six minutes later, New York padded its advantage via an efficient counter attack. Robles heaved the ball to find Steele in Sporting's half before the midfielder picked out a wide open Sam on the right flank. The Englishman cut the ball back inside to the top of the box and converted his shot to hand the Red Bulls a two-goal lead.
It proved to be a pivotal strike as the home side got back to within one in the second minute of stoppage time. Kamara collected a failed clearance and crossed the ball back into the box where Dwyer was arriving to send a powerful header past Robles.
Sporting applied more pressure for the remainder of added time, but the Red Bulls staved off the onslaught to earn their first road victory since May 4.