New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan (pictured) has scored two goals in the 2016/17 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League. (Photo: Mexsport)
VANCOUVER, Canada -- The New York Red Bulls' charge against the Vancouver Whitecaps on Thursday night is a simple one: score or go home.
They need to find the net at least once in the second leg of the 2016/17 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal series at BC Place or face elimination.
Last week, the Whitecaps struck for a precious away goal in the series opening 1-1 draw.
“We have to go there and score goals," said Red Bulls head coach Jesse Marsch. "We were prepared to do that anyway. Our group has trained really well this week and we’re really looking forward to this match.”
A victory would boost New York into the final four, as would any draw in which it scored at least two goals due to the away-goal rule.
If the teams play to a 1-1 deadlock in regulation, two extra-time periods will be needed to decide the team that advances. If the match is still tied, penalty kicks will determine the winner.
“Whichever way it goes, it’s going to be tight,” Marsch stated.
The Red Bulls brought full squad to western Canada, including Jamaica international defender Kemar Lawrence, who sat out the first leg due to yellow card accumulation.
New York deployed a new look last week, using two forwards instead of one they utilized the last two years. They played in a 4-2-2-2 formation.
“We like the way it operates,” concluded Marsch. “Still a long way to go before it’s being employed at its top effectiveness, but so far I’ve been pretty happy with how things have worked."