Diego Luna scored a goal in each half to lead Real Salt Lake to a 3-1 victory over the New York Red Bulls on Saturday night in Sandy, Utah.
Luna's scoring helped Salt Lake extend its unbeaten run to nine matches. Jefferson Savarino added a third goal late in the second half.
RSL (10-7-7, 37 points) have tallied seven goals over their last two home matches, garnering a victory against Orlando City in addition to Saturday's. New York (6-9-8, 26 points) never got on track after giving up a goal before the match was three minutes old. The Red Bulls have won just one road match this season.
RSL's defense held New York in check. Frankie Amaya got the Red Bulls on the board late, but New York never seriously threatened the Utah club.
Salt Lake wasted no time putting New York in a hole, as Luna blasted home a shot with his right foot in the second minute. Savarino sent a cross over to Luna, who was outside of the top of the six-yard box. Luna had an unobstructed look at the goalmouth and made the most of his opportunity.
A rocket straight to the moon pic.twitter.com/ueZXpQTVW4
New York struggled to create any meaningful scoring chances before halftime. RSL had a 6-4 edge in total shots during the first 45 minutes — allowing zero shots on frame — and controlled possession 59 percent of the time.
Luna picked up the brace in the 53rd minute when he chipped a ball over Red Bulls goalkeeper Carlos Coronel's head. The RSL midfielder fished the ball out of the midst of four New York players and laid it off to Danny Musovski. Musovski then fed it back to Luna in the center of the box on a give-and-go and Luna sent it into the back of the net.
A masterclass led by Diego Luna pic.twitter.com/6ep1tNK8Nk
Amaya pulled a goal back for New York in the 80th minute after redirecting a pass from Kyle Duncan past Zac MacMath. The Red Bulls' comeback hopes were quickly snuffed out.
— New York Red Bulls (@NewYorkRedBulls) July 16, 2023
Savarino scored an insurance goal for Salt Lake less than a minute later, curling a long ball inside the far post past a diving Coronel.
Like a shooting star pic.twitter.com/GsMXP6OuSI