English Premiership side Tottenham Hotspur defeated the host New York Red Bulls, 2-1, on Tuesday at Red Bull Arena in the inaugural Barclays New York Cup Powered by Under Armour. New York took the lead eight minutes in, but two second half goals from Gareth Bale and Gylfi Sigurdsson propelled the English club to the victory in front of 21,701 spectators.
New York’s newest Designated Player, Tim Cahill, made an immediate impact on his team debut, drawing a penalty kick that set up the game’s opening goal. Sebastien Le Toux played a ball towards the center of the park, and Cahill dummied the pass, leaving it for Dax McCarty. Cahill made a run behind the Spurs defense and McCarty picked him out with a well-placed looping chip. Cahill was ahead of the defense in the box and was taken down by Jan Vertonghen, prompting referee Niko Bratsis to point to the spot. Cooper stepped up to take the penalty and converted with a low shot to the left side.
In the 12th minute, Tottenham nearly found the equalizer. New York was called for a handball just outside their penalty area and Bale took the direct free kick. The Welshman’s shot was headed for goal, but Bill Gaudette made a leaping effort to tip the ball over. Four minutes later, Gaudette got his hand on a Tom Huddlestone shot, parrying it to safety.
Tottenham’s consistent pressure resulted in the tying goal in the 59th minute. Substitute forward Harry Kane tried to get in behind the New York defense, but Red Bull Markus Holgersson knocked it away for a corner kick. Sigurdsson delivered the ball into the area and Bale rose above everyone, heading it past Gaudette. It was Bale’s second goal in two matches at Red Bull Arena, as he also scored in Tottenham’s 2-1 victory over New York on July 22, 2010.
Five minutes later, the visitors took the lead, with Sigurdsson turning from provider to goal scorer. Sigurdsson received a pass from Benoit Assou-Ekotto near the Red Bulls’ area and turned upfield. Sigurdsson made a move around Holgersson, giving himself space in the box, and curled a right-footed shot over Gaudette and into the top corner.
The Red Bulls return to MLS play when they visit the Houston Dynamo on Friday at 8:00 PM ET at BBVA Compass Stadium in a battle between first and second place in the Eastern Conference (TV: NBC Sports Network; Radio: 93.1 FM). The teams will get back together a week later on Friday, Aug. 10 at Red Bull Arena at 8:00 PM ET (TV: NBC Sports Network; Radio: 93.1 FM). Tickets can be purchased by calling 1.877.RBSOCCER or by logging on to www.newyorkredbulls.com.
New York Red Bulls 1, Tottenham Hotspur FC 2
July 31, 2012 – Red Bull Arena – Harrison, NJ
MLS Regular Season
NY: Kenny Cooper (penalty) 8’
TOT: Gareth Bale (Gylfi Sigurdsson) 59’
TOT: Gylfi Sigurdsson (unassisted) 64’