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Red Bulls look to continue playoff push vs. struggling Cincinnati

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While there’s plenty of work to be done, the push toward a playoff spot continues for New York Red Bulls.

Meanwhile, FC Cincinnati is trying to find the positive amid its latest rough stretch as the two teams prepare to meet Saturday night in Cincinnati.

New York (8-11-7, 31 points) sits 11th in the Eastern Conference, eight points below the playoff line. However, the Red Bulls closed September on a 2-0-2 stretch, conceding just two goals over that span.

New York totaled seven goals over the past four matches, with Omir Fernandez scoring all three of his this season during that stretch — and one in each of the past two contests. His strike in the 37th minute Wednesday leveled a home match against Philadelphia that ended in a 1-1 draw.

“I just want to score goals, help the team whenever I can,” Fernandez said. “Scoring those goals when we win is much better.”

New York will be looking for a third straight victory on the road after posting consecutive shutouts in wins at Inter Miami and New York City FC. The Red Bulls have split their previous two matches at Cincinnati

Owners of the fewest points in MLS, FC Cincinnati (4-14-8, 20 points) have been outscored 13-5 during a season-high four-game losing streak since a 2-0 home victory over Toronto FC on Sept. 11.

Ronald Matarrita’s 38th-minute goal gave Cincinnati a 1-0 lead at Toronto on Wednesday. However, the hosts scored the next three goals before Luciano Acosta tallied his sixth of the season in the 3-2 defeat.

“We’re going to fight, we’re going to keep working,” Cincinnati interim coach Tyrone Marshall said. “We have to come with more energy and more discipline. … I know they’ve been going through a lot, so I’m going to try to keep it as positive as possible.”

New York and Cincinnati played to a scoreless draw in New Jersey on Aug. 4.

–Field Level Media

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