New York Red Bulls: Offensive Power and Inclusive Supporters
Sorry it has taken me a while to write this post from last Saturday’s game but I’ve had a strange week.
The game was a game of two halves: the first was a disorganized mess. The second was just amazing.
I’m not sure what happened in that first half. It was messy and the ball was lost way too easily but with some minor groin strains I’m going to blame that.
The second was seeing all the parts just seem to work. The Kenny Cooper/Thierry Henry front line is just getting crazy. Dax McCarty had what is probably his best half in a Red Bulls shirt. The much maligned Mehdi Ballouchy scored an amazing goal and did our ‘wipeout’ as his goal celebration. So what do we take from this?
A) Subs – Hans Backe used all 3 subs and not all close to end of the game. The first two were very important. Teemu Tainio for the injured Rafa Marquez at halftime set up the offensive onslaught in the 2nd half. Ballouchy for Joel Lindpere midway through the second half brought on some fresh legs to keep the onslaught going. Hopefully he will continue this.
B) Cooper may be a better partner for Henry then Luke Rodgers ever was. The day before the game Rodgers’ visa appeal was denied but with Cooper teaming up with Rodgers this is not going to hurt us as much as it seemed it would in preseason.
The Red Bulls do need one more polished striker since the tandem of Henry/Cooper/Juan Agedelo clearly is strong but with Henry most likely going to be injured or suspended for the occasional game and Agedelo currently injured and having likely USMNT duty leaves us with only one reliable polished striker. The Red Bulls’ Front Office has stated they had a plan B if Rodgers didn’t come back so I’m hoping they weren’t lying.
9 goals in two games and the first NY hat trick since 2006 and the first back to back multigoal game by a NY player since 2007 says it all about our strikeforce.
C) Ryan Meara – He is impressing everyone, I think. Yes, he gave up two easy goals in the first half but both were a whole-team disaster. He didn’t let the goals bother him and seems to have a good mental strength to keep going after a rough set of play. As he gets more experience as the season goes on I can only see him getting better. NYRB may not care about the draft but we seem to draft well with our very few picks.
My boyfriend’s first MLS game
I need to say how proud I am of the South Ward. My boyfriend came with me to the game and it was his first ever professional soccer match. He had a blast and is loving the whole soccer culture in America experience. He is from Texas so he is used to very homophobic sporting culture and has been in shock with how no one cares in New York. There was no need to hide that we were together. Bravo to the supporters not that I had any doubt since I’ve known them for a few years now but it needed to be said.
So now onto Columbus and lets hope the offensive power that dominated the past two home games continues in the first away game against an eastern conference rival.