New York Red Bulls
If you saw it the first time you have to see it again. And if you haven't seen it yet - well, that's why we're here.
Ryan Meara came up with a huge save in stoppage time as the Houston Dynamo made every possible attempt to exit Red Bull Arena with one point Wednesday night.
In the 93rd minute of the match, Dynamo midfielder Calen Carr put a solid header attempt on goal that nearly fooled Meara. But as you'll see in the video below, the rookie 'keeper was up for the challenge with this juggling save:
Kenny Cooper gave the Red Bulls an early 1-0 lead when he buried his eighth of the season in the seventh minute of Wednesday's match. Here's a replay of Coop's goal:
The Red Bulls' slow and steady climb up the power rankings this week was thanks in part to a full team effort in back-to-back matches against New England and Los Angeles. While guys like Dax McCarty and Brandon Barklage have received individual praise for their efforts, there's no question that Ryan Meara has also been the talk of the town over these past two clean sheets.
Meara's leaping, one-handed save on the Galaxy's Juninho in the 83rd minute of Saturday's match may very well have been the deciding factor behind whether the Red Bulls escaped LA with three points in the win or one in the draw.
Obviously the back line playing in front of Meara has also been a huge factor in recent games, but that save was all on the shoulders of the Red Bulls' rookie 'keeper.
MLSsoccer.com took notice of Meara's play and has justifiably given him a jump from third place to first overall in this week's Rookie Rankings. Here's what they had to say about the 21-year-old out of Fordham:
"Things just keep getting better and better for Meara. Last week, Ireland's interest in the young netminder went public, then he collected his second straight shutout in LA, a performance punctuated by an incredible save on Juninho's drive to preserve the Red Bulls' 1-0 victory."
Although Meara has been somewhat of a staple on the weekly Rookie Rankings, fellow newcomer Connor Lade made his debut this week at the No. 4 spot. Lade made his Red Bulls debut as a sub in the Apr. 14 draw against San Jose and registered his first career MLS start the following week against DC United. MLSsoccer.com had this to say about Lade:
"Welcome to the list, Connor Lade. The New York Homegrown signee wasn't supposed to play much of a role this year, but injuries and circumstance have thrust him into the action. He hasn't missed a beat, putting in several good performances culminating in a poised, professional 90 minutes against Landon Donovan and the Galaxy."
What do you think about this week's Rookie Rankings?
Any Red Bulls fan knows how big it was for the team to snag three points on the road in Los Angeles. Never mind the defense posting a clean sheet in the 1-0 victory, the second-straight shutout of the season.
But it seems 180-plus minutes of keeping an opponent scoreless only goes so far in terms of power rankings. MLSsoccer.com was rational enough to notice the perseverance of the club through its rough patch of injuries and in turn bumped New York up two spots in the rankings. Others, like Sports Illustrated and Soccer By Ives, still continue to either have doubts or a slight hesitation to promote the team up the rankings more than one spot.
Here's what MLSsoccer.com had to say after promoting the Red Bulls from ninth place in week 8, to seventh place in week 9:
"What happened to the team that was giving up three or four goals every time out? A tactical shift has helped, as have Ryan Meara's heroics in goal. The next test is reintegrating the mistake-prone pair of Rafa Márquez and Roy Miller."
(Editor's Note: To counter that, the Red Bulls are 3-0-1 when Marquez and Miller are in the lineup together. Just throwing that out there...)
Soccer By Ives: 7 (8)
"The Red Bulls, missing a slew of players including Designated Players Rafa Marquez and Thierry Henry, traveled across the country to take on the defending MLS Cup champion Galaxy, who rested most of their regulars ahead of the contest. But New York beat the odds, grinding out a 1-0 win. It looks like this team might have some fight after all."
Sports Illustrated: 7 (8)
"The Red Bulls are relishing their new underdog role amid an injury crisis, one that has seemed to develop a sense of cohesion in the locker room and on the field that was previously lacking. Rookie goalkeeper Ryan Meara's noticeable growth in the last few weeks has made all the difference for Hans Backe's club."
So if you're keeping track, the Red Bulls are in seventh place across the board in all three of those power rankings. Only in ESPN's rankings did the Red Bulls stay level at ninth place. Just a little food for thought: even the Dyamo, Wednesday's opponent who has posted a winless record in their last four outings, rank higher than the Red Bulls, according to ESPN.
What do you think of this week's rankings? Where would you place the Red Bulls on your personal power rankings?
Joel Lindpere's first goal of the season has certainly turned a few heads, as it not only led the Red Bulls to a 1-0 road victory in LA but also finds itself in the mix for Goal of the Week honors.
The play developed as defender Connor Lade sent the ball in to Jan Gunnar Solli, who streaked down the wing toward goal looking for an option to open up. That opportunity presented itself as Lindpere kept pace with Solli and charged his way into the box. Solli placed the ball perfectly to a striding Lindpere, who balanced himself to avoid the stumble and slipped a left-footed finish past stunned Galaxy goalkeeper Bill Gaudette.
You know what to do now. Cast your vote here, spread the word on Twitter and Facebook and do your part to ensure Lindpere lands the title for Week 9 Goal of the Week.
Here's the full rundown of this week's nominees:
Vote online or text goal code to 22442.
Voting runs until 11:59 pm PT on Thursdays.
For complete Goal of the Week coverage—including an archive of past winners—click here.
If you’ve ever been to a match at Red Bull Arena you’ve probably seen (and heard) the large group of fans behind one of the goals singing, chanting, jumping up and down, and supporting the Red Bulls for the full 90 minutes. Those passionate supporters form the "South Ward" at Red Bull Arena. On Saturday night, I experienced the mayhem of Red Bulls fanaticism up close.
When I arrived at New York City's Herald Square late Saturday afternoon the setting was a calm, typical weekend day in Manhattan. People sat on park benches, tourists strolled by carrying shopping bags and taking pictures of the various sights and of course the consistently clogged New York City traffic slowly rolled by. However, in the next hour the typical Saturday in Midtown would be turned on its head.
The first Red Bulls supporters started to slowly pour in. Before long there was a large crowd gathered wearing various Red Bull jerseys, t-shirts, scarves and any other form of Red Bulls colors. A small group of Chelsea fans made their way over to the Square as well, decked out in blue and singing songs in toast to their club’s FA Cup victory earlier that day. The various supporters groups that make up the South Ward at Red Bull Arena (Empire Supporters Club, Viking Army, and Garden State Ultras) carry various tools of their own, but it’s clear that all are united behind their support of one club.
In the shadow of the Empire State Building, the march is set to begin. Red and white flags are raised, a drum is readied, and voices are rising.
“The whole park sings with us, the whole park sings with us,” starts the familiar chant, adapted slightly for the day’s surroundings, followed as usual by a loud “Let’s Go Red Bulls” chant. Even the Chelsea fans started to join in.
As the crowd moves down 33rd Street towards the Football Factory at Legends, traffic moves by even slower than usual, as people roll down their car windows, gawking at the curious scene. Tourists, who just moments earlier were gazing at the Empire State Building, now turn their cameras to the spectacle unfolding on behalf of the Red Bulls supporters. One thing that no one can deny about Red Bull supporters: They. Are. LOUD.
I spoke with two tourists, who said they were around the corner on Fifth Avenue and could hear the supporters from there before making their way over, curious as to what was going on. While they had only a passing familiarity with MLS and the Red Bulls, they came away impressed with the support, saying the fans had “great energy”.
The chants and songs continue: “For you, for you, we’ll be singing a song. All day, all day, we’ll be singing a song. And when we win, we’ll be singing a song.”
“As long as I’m breathing, I’ll sing for the Red Bulls, when we’re winning or when we’re losing. We are your people, we’ll always follow. We’re always behind you, that you can count on.”
Those are just a couple of the staples of the South Ward song book that the supporters broke out for the march and well through the night as the viewing party commenced at the Football Factory. And of course, there were a couple of anti-L.A. songs mixed in as well to get in the proper mood for the night’s match against the Galaxy.
As the march simmered down and the supporters began filing into Legends to watch the match, the “Let’s Go Red Bulls” chant began again, this time with the prelude, “The whole street sings with us, the whole street sings with us.”
By the end of the night it’s clear: Whether a park, a street, a bar; wherever there are Red Bulls supporters, their unbridled passion and energy will transform any typical venue into the sights and sounds of Red Bull Arena.
For the full 90 minutes of the Red Bulls' 1-0 victory over the Galaxy, it felt as if Red Bull Arena had been moved to West 33rd St. in New York.
The South Ward supporters certainly left their mark on New York Saturday.
New York is our home.
Joel Lindpere scored the lone Red Bulls goal in New York's 1-0 win over the Los Angeles Galaxy. Rookie goalkeeper Ryan Meara registered his second-career shutout as the Red Bulls picked up three points on the road.
Check out these highlights from New York's 1-0 win over LA:
Joel Lindpere scored his first goal of the season and Ryan Meara earned his second career shutout as the Red Bulls defeated the Galaxy 1-0 at The Home Depot Center in Carson Saturday night (Full Recap).
The Red Bulls are back in action Wednesday at 7pm ET when the Houston Dynamo pays a visit to Red Bull Arena. Great tickets available now by visiting Red Bulls Ticket Central or calling 877.RB.SOCCER.
Here are a few photos from Saturday's match against LA:
With the LA Galaxy pressing in the later stages of Saturday's match, Ryan Meara stepped up to make a huge save on a laser shot from the Galaxy's Juninho. Watch the replay here:
Joel Lindpere scored the first goal in Saturday's match against the LA Galaxy, and his first of the season, with this shot that sailed into the back of the net. Jan Gunnar Solli was awarded the assist, his second of the season: