A pair of teams hopeful to emerge from rough starts will meet Wednesday when Inter Miami CF play host to the New York Red Bulls in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
The Red Bulls (3-5-7, 16 points) have shown gradual improvement, going 2-1-1 over their last four games, but they enter off a 1-0 road loss to the Seattle Sounders on Saturday. New York could not capitalize after the Sounders were reduced to 10 men due to a red card for Joao Paulo.
"We started the match too slow," Red Bulls coach Troy Lesesne said. "And when you start too slow and you let Seattle, a team like this, control the tempo and create chances, then they're going to be good enough to hurt you. That's exactly what they did."
The Red Bulls had a pair of prime goal-scoring chances from Elias Manoel, who entered at the start of the second half but could not find the tying goal.
Missed opportunities are nothing new for New York, which is tied with the Los Angeles Galaxy for fewest goals in the league with 10. Cory Burke, Omir Fernandez and Andres Reyes have scored two apiece.
Another road test awaits as New York searches for its first victory away from home this season (0-4-4).
Inter Miami (5-9-0, 15 points) have 14 goals scored on the season but are in last place in the Eastern Conference. The club appeared to be coming to life on a three-game winning streak in early May, but it has lost its last three MLS games by a combined 6-2 tally.
Inter Miami's most recent defeat came Saturday in a 1-0 road decision against CF Montreal. It was the first time Inter Miami was shut out since a three-game scoreless streak to open April.
Montreal scored its goal in the 53rd minute but Inter Miami could not equalize despite turning up the offensive intensity. Nicolas Stefanelli hit the crossbar in the 87th minute and Benjamin Cremaschi hit the post from a sharp angle in extra time.
"It's a game we should be winning with the chances we created, the moments that we had," Inter Miami coach Phil Neville said. "We have four games coming up in the next 7-12 days so everyone has to be ready."
Leonardo Campana and Josef Martinez lead Inter Miami with three goals apiece, but they each have just one goal since early May in a span of six games, including U.S. Open Cup play.
--Field Level Media