MLS: Red Bulls break through vs. Charlotte FC, win 3-1

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Emil Forsberg scored twice in a three-minute span in the second half to lead the New York Red Bulls to a 3-1 win over Charlotte FC on Wednesday in Harrison, N.J.

The Red Bulls (7-3-5, 26 points) are 4-0-2 at home this season, marking the second-longest season-opening home unbeaten streak in franchise history.

Andres Reyes scored New York’s other goal in the 83rd minute.

The loss ended both Charlotte’s five-match unbeaten streak (3-0-2), and its five-match shutout streak. Forsberg’s 74th-minute goal was the first conceded by Charlotte FC since they surrendered a second-half stoppage goal on April 27.

Ben Bender scored in the sixth minute of second-half stoppage time for Charlotte’s only goal on Wednesday. Entering as a 75th-minute substitute, Bender was playing in his first league match since last September, as he had been sidelined by knee surgery.

Bender’s late tally allowed Charlotte FC (6-6-4, 22 points) to end their own shutout streak just shy of three full matches. Charlotte has scored only 15 goals this season, tied for the second-fewest total in the league.

Charlotte FC held 54.3 percent of the possession in the first half and had the best scoring chance during the ninth minute. Patrick Agyemang did well to corral a long Liel Abada pass and regain control of the ball in New York’s box, but the forward’s shot deflected off the post.

The halftime break was extended by over an hour due to a weather delay, and most of the second half was played in pouring rain. Despite the difficult conditions, the Red Bulls’ attack came to life after the restart, and eventually it broke through on Forsberg’s free kick in the 74th minute.

Forsberg struck again just two minutes later. Lewis Morgan crossed to a streaking Forsberg coming up the middle of the field, and the midfielder buried the shot for his sixth goal of the season.

Then, off a corner attempt, Reyes battled through the scrum to find the loose ball and convert his first goal of the season.

–Field Level Media

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