Chris Armas
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

New York Red Bulls head coach Chris Armas took the Hudson River Derby to the next level by “claiming the Bronx,” where NYCFC plays.

It’s only preseason, but New York Red Bulls head coach Chris Armas is already throwing shade at his rivals New York City F.C.

NYCFC plays at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, which makes it all the more outrageous. Armas expressed that the Red Bulls claim The Bronx because the club has four Bronx natives, including himself, new signing Omir Fernandez, and second team player Jordan Scarlett.

“We have four [guys from The Bronx] now,” Armas said when he was asked how he feels about their latest Bronx native, Fernandez, joining the club.

“We claim The Bronx so we add a little toughness. It’s a New York flavor so it’s good to have another one.”

Whether Armas was thinking about NYCFC or not when he made that statement, only he knows. Either way, it’s a statement The Pigeons’ fans won’t forget about.

Although they’re based in The Bronx, NYCFC doesn’t have any player from there, unlike the Red Bulls. As for the Red Bulls, even though they represent New York, they play in New Jersey at the Red Bull Arena—the NYCFC fans always make sure to remind them about that.

Of the 14 times the two New York teams met, the Red Bulls were victorious eight times. On the flip side, The Boys in Blue defeated NYRB four times and drew with them twice, including the last time they played each other on Aug. 27 in a 1-1 scoreline.

A Bronx native has never scored in the Hudson River Derby before. But two New Yorkers have found the net. Thomas McNamara netted for NYCFC on Jun. 28, 2015, and Alex Muyl was on target for The Metros on May 21, 2016. And of course, NYRB also had a player from New Jersey score for them in the Derby, Matt Miazga.

Next time the two clubs will meet at the Yankee Stadium is on Aug. 24, only then we’ll know who really claims The Bronx.

Originally from Haiti, Ralph 'Onz' Chery started his writing career as a City College of New York student with The Campus. He also wrote for First Touch, the Cosmopolitan Soccer League and other local leagues. After graduating, Onz started covering the New York Red Bulls for ESNY and joined Haitian Times.