May 5, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Alejandro Romero Kaku Gamarra (10) celebrates his goal against New York City FC with New York Red Bulls midfielder Florian Valot (22) during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
“It’s a derby game, we’ve got no excuses at all,” Anton Tinnerholm said. “The whole game they were the better team from the start.”
Outside of an injured ankle, Tinnerholm enjoyed an adversity-free beginning to his New York City FC career – until Saturday at Red Bull Arena when the New York Red Bulls routed the Cityzens 4-0.
NYCFC coach Patrick Vieira was equally succinct in his postgame remarks.
“I am prepared to accept that we can lose games,” Vieira said. “But the way we lost today, with the lack of conviction, the lack of competitiveness — is something I cannot accept.”
New York’s Kaku and Florian Valot scored inside the opening four minutes of the match to provide a clear picture of which team was more prepared and had more desire to compete in the first of three Hudson River Derby matches this season.
“If I had the chance to change all the 10 players on the field, I would do it at halftime,” Vieira said in a rare moment of abject denunciation of his side. “I wasn’t happy with every single player on the field.”
Tinnerholm echoed his coach, saying the performance was “not acceptable.”
“We did mistakes in the wrong part of the field and they punished us very hard,” Tinnerholm said after the Red Bulls scored three times in his 45-minute shift.
Vieira did make a pair of halftime substitutions when Ebenezer Ofori replaced Tinnerholm and Sebastien Ibeagha supplanted centerback Maxime Chanot. At one point in the half, Tinnerholm and Chanot engaged in a heated discussion during the run of play, complete with sharp gestures and shouting.
Nevertheless, the two swaps at the interval failed to provide a needed goal.
“I made those two changes and changed the tactical side of the game,” Vieira said. “It didn’t work.”
Vieira pulled captain David Villa in favor of Rodney Wallace at the 66th minute for his third and final move of the drubbing. After scoring his 400th goal – the game winner – versus FC Dallas last weekend, Villa failed to take a single shot against the Red Bulls as central defenders Aaron Long and Tim Parker put the clamps on the NYCFC star.
“It was tough for David, he didn’t have the support he normally has,” Vieira said. “It was more a collective nightmare than an individual.
“Something that is very difficult for me to accept that the other team wanted it more than us.”