HARRISON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — When the New York Red Bulls opened at home against rivals D.C. United, Roy Miller wasn’t even around.
The defender who made a key error last weekend didn’t dress for Saturday’s 0-0 tie against D.C. United.
Miller went to his native Costa Rica to prepare for the Ticos’ World Cup qualifier on Friday against the United States at Commerce City, Colo.
“We gave him a few days to clear his head,” said New York coach Mike Petke, still in search of his first win with the Red Bulls at 0-1-2.
New York allowed late goals in its first two games at Portland and San Jose. Miller’s hand ball led to a stoppage-time penalty kick at San Jose, and while Luis Robles saved Chris Wondolowski initial spot kick, Miller was called for encroachment, and Wondolowski scored on his retake.
Bill Hamid made eight saves for D.C. United (1-1-1), including a diving save on Brandon Barklage’s shot off a corner kick in stoppage time, which came close to crossing the goal line.
“It looked like it touched the goal line,” said Red Bulls midfielder Tim Cahill, who was right next to Barklage. “Sometimes, you get those. It wasn’t a big loss for us. I’m confident that we’ll get going next time. Three games in, we’re OK. I like what Mike is trying to do with the team.”
Robles made two saves to record the shutout.
“One of the objectives is to keep them off the board and we did that,” Robles said. “My job as goalkeeper is to keep us disciplined. I think we did a good job to get chances. I feel like a lot of positives came out of this.”
New York outshot D.C. United 23-4, with Thierry Henry putting five of 10 attempts on goal. His 43rd-minute bicycle kick was saved by Hamid. Fabian Espindola’s header off Henry’s corner kick clanked off the crossbar in the 24th.
D.C. United head coach Ben Olsen said his team was fortunate to come away with the tie.
“Absolutely, this was big for us,” Olsen said. “You have to credit our great goalkeeper. Our defense was able to scramble and make plays. We were disconnected on the offensive end and we just have to get better there. We have to get more possessions of the ball and look to improve on that. We’ll try to make something happen.”
D.C. United has scored only one goal in three matches this season.
D.C.’s Dwayne DeRosario, the 2011 MLS MVP, got only one shot on goal against his former team.
“They pushed the ball and got a little bit of rhythm,” DeRosario said. “They moved the ball around well and we couldn’t get it. Bill did a fantastic job of keeping the ball out of the net. We’ll take the tie.”
Petke isn’t concerned that his team is without a victory after three games.
“We created so many opportunities today,” Petke said. “How does the ball not go in? It really is tough to watch this unfold. It’s to the point of what do you have to do to get it in. We did what we could. I’m not worried at all.”
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