MLS Regular Season
Dax McCarty tapped into his inner ninja for the third time this season when he headed home the go-ahead goal in the 79th minute of Saturday's match. Crew goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum was injured on the play, but walked off under his own power minutes later. Crew goalkeeper Matt Lampson came on in his place, as New York took a 2-1 lead.
The Red Bulls returned to training Friday afternoon after a much-needed break in the schedule; a break that allowed players to rest up and heal for the final stretch run. We caught up with Kenny Cooper after the training session to see what he had to say about the tempo in practice and the final matches of the season.
What’s the tempo like in training as you guys come back from a little break?
It feels great to get back and see the guys again and hopefully everyone enjoyed their break. I’m sure everyone was itching to get back out there today. It’s good to see everyone and get back out on the field with them.
It’s back to crunch time now and the Eastern Conference remains a really tight race. Have you looked at the standings? Does it not matter at this point?
I have looked at the table. It’s tight and with seven games left, five of them being home games, hopefully we can finish this last part of the season off strong. We’ve had a little bit of a break and hopefully everyone’s feeling good and healthy. We’ve obviously been unfortunate with some injury problems, but hopefully in that time off guys that were hurt were able to heal up and come back feeling refreshed for this part of the season.
A lot of matches coming up against some of the Eastern Conference sides too like Columbus on Sept. 15, Kansas City two times and Chicago of course in October.
Yeah, and when you’re close in the table to teams and you go against them they’re six-point games. Because there’s a possibility of not only getting points but also taking points off of the other team and hopefully we can do that in these last couple of games. Like you said, we have KC twice, we have Columbus and teams that are in our conference. It’d be great if we can get maximum points and keep them from getting points.
So overall, it sounds like the team is rested and ready to come firing out of the gate against Columbus next weekend.
Well you know, we have a week before the next game. We were back at it Friday and I’m sure the guys were taking good care of themselves whether it was needed rest or sessions in if they felt they wanted or needed it. So, hopefully everyone is feeling good and refreshed. I’m sure everyone is eager to get back out there and put the work in to prepare for our next home game.
EA Sports is giving MLS fans a chance to vote from a field of 19 players to appear on a downloadable cover of FIFA 13 as we edge ever closer to the highly-anticipated release.
MLSsoccer.com has compiled a list of the players, one from each club, available for the special downloadable cover of the game. Red Bulls midfielder Tim Cahill is among the players available for selection, joined by the likes of San Jose's Chris Wondolowski, FC Dallas' Brek Shea and more.
Fans can vote for up to three players. The winning trio will then be joined by MLSsoccer.com's #1 ranked "24 Under 24" player to complete the four-player, downloadable cover.
Visit MLSsoccer.com now to cast your vote, and keep an eye out for the upcoming downloadable cover of FIFA 13.
Red Bulls forward Kenny Cooper and midfielder/defender Rafa Marquez have been named MLS W.O.R.K.S. Humanitarians of the Month for September.
All season long, Cooper and Marquez have been active in the community with various charities and non-profit organizations . Recently the duo teamed up with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to raise attention and funds for pediatric cancer research.
Both Red Bulls were joined by fellow MLS players Dan Kennedy (Chivas USA), Logan Pause (Chicago Fire) and San Jose's Mehdi Ballouchy, Shea Salinas and Jason Hernandez as Humanitarians of the Month.
Congrats to Cooper, Marquez and the rest of the nominated MLS players on a job well done!
To learn more about MLS W.O.R.K.S. and the Soccer Kicks Cancer Initiative, visit MLSsoccer.com.
Up until his 88th minute, match-tying goal against DC United last week, Red Bulls defender Wilman Conde was already having a strong game at left back. That Goal of the Week nominee (Reminder: Vote now!) only strengthened his position on the pitch, as the Red Bulls snagged a point on the road at RFK Stadium.
The staff at MLSsoccer.com took notice and added the Colombian defender to their Team of the Week roster. Here's what they had to say about Conde:
"The defender excelled in New York’s lone game of the week, a 2-2 midweek draw with D.C. United. Took to an unfamiliar role at left back with ease and provided a late equalizer with a top-drawer finish from outside the area."
Also worth noting, midfielder Dax McCarty is listed as an honorable mention, as his shutdown play in the midfield continues to receive heaps of praise.
Not much movement for the Red Bulls in Week 26 Power Rankings as they remain locked in the Top 4 across the board.
Let's kick things off with MLSsoccer.com, as they keep the Red Bulls at fourth place after last week's 2-2 draw against DC United:
"The Red Bulls got their second straight crucial draw on the road, and even though they weren't particuarly pleased with how they played (are they ever?), you can't ignore a team that keeps getting results. Now they have five of their last seven at home, where they're unbeaten."
ESPN Soccernet also has the Red Bulls as fourth overall, dropping them one spot from last week's third-place ranking:
"Wilman Conde's late equalizer allowed the Red Bulls to snag a road draw against D.C. United, helping New York overcome some very suspect goalkeeping from Bill Gaudette. The Red Bulls have two more weeks off until their next outing against Columbus."
There isn't much shuffling going on in the SI rankings either. The order of the Top 4 teams in last week's installment remains the same this time around, with the Red Bulls holding down third overall:
"On short rest, the Red Bulls managed a point at rival D.C. thanks to Wilman Conde's unexpected late blast. It is Conde's play at left back that his most unexpected contribution though. Hans Backe's faith in Conde to stand tall against fleet-of-foot wingers has been vindicated despite growing mounds of critics and detractors."
You would think a week off shouldn't impact much between now and next week, but we've been surprised before. A lot is bound to change, hopefully for the better, when the Red Bulls play three matches between Sept. 15 and Sept. 22.
Wilman Conde's scorcher scored in the 88th minute of Wednesday's match against DC United has been nominated for MLSsoccer.com's Goal of the Week.
You knew when you saw it that it would be a nominee. Now vote to make sure it's the winner.
The winner is determined by the total number of votes cast online and via text and is announced on Fridays.
Vote online or text goal code to 22442.
Voting runs until 11:59 pm PT on Thursdays. For complete coverage of the AT&T Goal of the Week—including an archive of past winners—click here.
First off, if you haven't seen Wilman Conde's game-tying goal in the 88th minute of Wednesday's match, make sure you do that first.
Now, check out what he had to say to MSG's Tina Cervasio about his scorcher, the Colombian's first tally since August 2010 when he played with the Chicago Fire: