New York Red Bulls defender Roy Miller brought the ire of his team's fans down upon him on Sunday, when he almost single-handedly turned a win over the San Jose Earthquakes into a loss. Now his candor after the fact may have earned the Costa Rica international some permanent enmity.
New York was leading the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 on Sunday when Miller lost track of Adam Jahn inside the penalty area, allowing the rookie to knock home Sam Cronin's cross for an 83rd minute equalizer. Miller's handball a few minutes later then handed a spot kick to San Jose, and despite Luis Robles saving Chris Wondolowki's first effort, encroachment from Miller gave the reigning MVP another bite at the apple, and he converted to seal a 2-1 comeback win.
But the capper was Miller's admission on Wednesday that the encroachment that voided Robles' fantastic stop and gave Wondolowski another take of his spot kick was an intentional act.
"I did it on purpose with the thought that Wondolowski would miss," Miller told MLSsoccer.com after training on Wednesday. "Simply, I wasn’t in agreement with the situation that was going on and the penalty kick being given, because for me, the handball didn’t have to be called but some refs call it and some don’t.
"I did it so that if [Wondolowski] made it, he would have to do it again and then he missed. I had the unfortunate luck that Luis saved the initial attempt."
According to the rules, however, any goal would have been counted in spite of his encroachment, and Miller's action only served as an insurance policy to give the league's most lethal scorer another chance from 12 yards.
"We’re all disappointed with the situation, especially me,” Miller continued. "Because in my personal case, I’ve had many things [go wrong], not just this year but last year, too. That’s what affects me right now and I apologize to my teammates about that because in reality it’s not their fault.
"But in the end, we’re a team and I thank them for the support they give me."