Dane returns in 1:1 tie with Danes
February 18, 2015 (Official Game Summary)
The New York Red Bulls used a 36th minute goal from Mike Grella to earn a 1-1 draw with Danish side HB Koge in their first match of the IMG Suncoast Pro Classic on Wednesday night.
The game opened up slowly, with the unfamiliar sides both looking for a rhythm and feeling each other out through the first 15 minutes.
Over time, the Red Bulls began to dictate the match and found the first goal through Grella in the 36th minute. Starting with a hold-up by Felipe on the left, the Brazilian laid the ball off to Roy Miller before his deflected cross found Grella, who took a touch, turned and fired past the Koge keeper to put the Red Bulls up 1-0.
Just before the insertion of Andrew Jean-Baptiste and trialing center back Jhon Kennedy Hurtado Koge pulled level in the 62nd minute with a mark from Philip Zinckernagel, who found space on the right before beating Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles one-on-one.
A heavily subbed Red Bulls side (including Dane Richards) continued to press for the last 25 minutes, and twice came close to the go-ahead goal. In the 85th minute, second half substitute Marius Obekop cut back a knifing low cross which just missed the goal before being put out of play by a Koge defender.
In the 89th minute a good combination play from veteran Peguy Luyindula and 18-year-old Cameroonian striker Anatole Abang saw a quick give-and-go between the two before Abang taken down just outside the penalty area.