Red Bulls Weekly Update: October 4

New York moves atop Eastern Conference table with win, host RSL Saturday

Joel Lindpere

Photo Credit: 
Getty Images

FIRST PLACE RED BULLS HOST DEFENDING CHAMPS REAL SALT LAKE: The first place, playoff bound New York Red Bulls look to continue their stellar form when they host defending MLS Cup Champion Real Salt Lake on Saturday afternoon at Red Bull Arena (4:00 PM ET, TV: MSG, Telefutura; Radio: WADO 1280 AM). Please note the game time was changed earlier this year from 4:30 to 4:00 PM.

The Red Bulls come into the match in sole possession of first place in the Eastern Conference for the first time since May 19, thanks to a 1-0 victory on the weekend over the Kansas City Wizards. The resurgence of Dane Richards continued, with the Jamaican netting the only goal of the game. New York got a standout performance from Man of the Match and MLS Player of the Week Bouna Coundoul, who made a career-high 12 saves en route to his tenth shutout of the season. Coupled with Columbus’ 0-0 draw versus San Jose, the Red Bulls propelled into first place in the East on a record of 14-8-5, 47 points. They trail Los Angeles by just six points for the league’s best point total.

The champions, Real Salt Lake, have enjoyed a solid defense of their title so far in 2010, earning the second best record in the league so far at 14-4-9, 51 points. RSL’s last league loss came all the way back on July 17, a 2-0 defeat at the hands of FC Dallas. In their last match, Real Salt Lake came away with a 2-1 victory at New England, as RSL leading scorer Alvaro Saborio notched the game winner in the 84th minute, his tenth tally. They are paced by Argentine playmaker Javier Morales, who has six goals and leads the club with eight assists.

The Red Bulls fell at Real Salt Lake 1-0 on September 4 in the teams’ only other meeting this season. Fabian Espindola’s fourth minute goal proved the difference, as a short-handed Red Bulls side could not crack RSL’s stingy defense.  Last season, New York and Salt Lake split their meetings, with New York taking a 2-0 victory at Giants Stadium on April 18, 2009. On October 14, 2009, Real Salt Lake defended their home turf against New York with a 2-0 victory of their own. Since Real Salt Lake entered MLS in 2006, the Red Bulls are 3-2-6 in 11 meetings against the Utah club.

LAST WEEK:
Red Bulls 1, Kansas City Wizards 0 at Red Bull Arena on October 2.  

THIS WEEK:
Red Bulls vs. Real Salt Lake at Red Bull Arena on Saturday, October 9 at 4:00 PM ET (TV: MSG, Telefutura; Radio; WADO 1280 AM)

NEXT WEEK:  
Red Bulls at Philadelphia Union at PPL Park on Saturday, October 16 at 6:00 PM ET (TV: Fox Soccer Chanel; Radio: WADO 1280 AM)  

2010 MLS STANDINGS - INCLUDES GAMES OF SUNDAY, October 03, 2010

RED BULLS PUNCH PLAYOFF TICKET, MOVE INTO FIRST PLACE WITH 1-0 WIN: The New York Red Bulls punched their ticket to the 2010 MLS Cup Playoffs with a 1-0 victory over the Kansas City Wizards on Saturday night at Red Bull Arena in front of 24,799 spectators. Dane Richards’ fourth goal of the season was all the Red Bulls needed, and New York sat alone in first place atop the Eastern Conference with a record of 14-8-5, 47 points, opening a one-point lead over the Columbus Crew, which drew 0-0 to San Jose Saturday. Man of the Match Bouna Coundoul made a career-high 12 saves, and recorded his tenth shutout of the season, a single-season franchise record.

New York didn’t take long to jump on top of the visitors. In the sixth minute, the red-hot Richards, who has four goals in his past five games, applied pressure to Kansas City defender Jimmy Conrad, stealing the ball near the penalty area. Richards positioned himself in the penalty box and curled a left-footed shot around keeper Jimmy Nielsen.

Despite going down early, Kansas City responded well. In the 13th minute, Roy Miller came to the rescue for the Red Bulls, deflecting Kei Kamara’s effort from the penalty area. Nine minutes later, Teal Bunbury looked to level the match, firing a shot from 20 yards out that forced Coundoul to make a save. Richards could have doubled his tally in first half stoppage time, pushing a 12-yard attempt past the left post.

The Wizards continued their aggression in the second half, earning a free kick in the opening minutes, and Kamara nearly tied the game when his attempt rattled off the woodwork. Coundoul continued his stellar play in the 56th minute, stopping Bunbury from point blank range. Richards had another chance to give the Red Bulls a two-goal cushion when he went through unmarked, but his shot slammed off the right post. Forward Thierry Henry also nearly doubled New York’s lead in the 64th minute, weaving his way down the left side of the field, but his effort to the far post begged just wide.

Coundoul made perhaps his best save of the night in the 76 th minute. Wizards substitute Jack Jewsbury won the ball in midfield and charged towards goal, letting go a blast from 25 yards out. Coundoul’s outstretched arm tipped the ball over the net for a corner kick.

New York midfielder Rafa Marquez was a late scratch in the lineup due to a left knee contusion and he was replaced by Tony Tchani.

BOUNA TIME WINS POW: New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul was named MLS Player of the Week for Week 27 of the Major League Soccer season. Coundoul made a career-high 12 saves in the Red Bulls’ 1-0 victory over the Kansas City Wizards on Saturday, Oct. 2 – a result that clinched a playoff berth for New York and propelled it to first place in the Eastern Conference. The shutout was Coundoul’s 10th of the season, setting a new franchise record for a season.

Throughout the match, Coundoul controlled his penalty box and made several key saves to keep Kansas City off the score sheet. In the 56th minute, a defensive miscue by New York led Teal Bunbury in alone on net, but Coundoul went to ground to stop the rookie’s attempt. His biggest save came 15 minutes from full time, when Jack Jewsbury unleashed a shot from 25 yards out that looked destined for the top corner. Coundoul leapt and used his outstretched arm to push the ball over the net.

This season, Coundoul has registered a record of 13-7-5 and a goals against average of 1.04 in 25 games played. He ranks second in MLS in saves with 100, and his 10 shutouts is good for fourth in the league. The 28-year-old Senegalese International was signed by New York on June 29, 2009.

RED BULLS TO RAISE AWARENESS FOR BREAST CANCER: As part of MLS W.O.R.K.S., the Red Bulls will participate in a league-wide campaign to help the fight against breast cancer during their October 9 match versus Real Salt Lake at Red Bull Arena. As part of the effort, the match will be played with a commemorative pink adidas match ball, players will use pink sideline towels, and coaches and staff will don pink scarves. Also, both teams will wear a special pink MLS W.O.R.K.S. ribbon patch on their jerseys.

RED BULLS PLAYOFF TICKETS ON SALE: Tickets for the Red Bulls remaining regular season home matches, as well as 2010 MLS Cup Playoffs matches at Red Bull Arena are on sale now and can be purchased by calling 1.877.RBSOCCER or by CLICKING HERE.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A YEAR MAKES: With the Red Bulls 14th win of the season, the team has made a nine-victory turnaround from last season’s five win campaign. This turnaround ranks second in the history of MLS. The 1999-2000 MetroStars had a turnaround of 10 wins, and with three matches to go, the 2010 Red Bulls could complete the best single season turnaround in league history.

WIN INCREASE IN CONSECUTIVE SEASONS, MLS ALL-TIME:
Team, Seasons, Win Increase

1. NY MetroStars, 1999-2000, 10***
2. New York Red Bulls, 2009-2010, 9
T-3. Kansas City Wizards, 1999-2000, 8***
T-3. Los Angeles Galaxy, 1997-1998, 8***
T-3. Colorado Rapids, 2001-2002, 8
***Prior to the 2000 season, there were no ties in MLS matches

The 2010 Red Bulls have also made the third best point turnaround in league history. So far, the Red Bulls have improved by 26 points from last season’s 21 total.

POINT INCREASE IN CONSECUTIVE SEASONS, MLS ALL-TIME:
Team, Seasons, Point Increase

1. NY MetroStars, 1999-2000, 39***
2. Kansas City Wizards, 1999-2000, 37***
3. New York Red Bulls, 2009-2010, 26
4. Chivas USA, 2005-2009, 25
5. Los Angeles Galaxy, 1997-1998, 24***
*** Prior to the 2000 season, there were no ties in MLS matches

FOUR RED BULLS CALLED UP, MARQUEZ AVAILABLE FOR RSL: Red Bull New York announced today that midfielders Rafa Marquez and Dane Richards, defender Andrew Boyens, and goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul have all been called into their respective national teams. Richards, Boyens and Coundoul will miss the Red Bulls’ match on Saturday, Oct. 9 versus Real Salt Lake at Red Bull Arena (4:00 PM ET; TV: MSG/Telefutura; Radio: WADO 1280 AM).

Márquez, who will be available for selection against Real Salt Lake, has been called up by Mexico for the team’s friendly on Oct. 12 versus Venezuela in Juarez, Mexico. Marquez has been capped 97 times for Mexico, and has scored 11 goals. In seven matches since signing with New York as a Designated Player on Aug. 2, the Mexico captain has notched a goal and an assist. In the seven matches Márquez has played in, New York is 4-1-2.

Richards has been called up to Jamaica’s squad for its friendly on Oct. 10 versus Trinidad and Tobago in Kingston, Jamaica. Richards has 19 caps for the Jamaican National Team and scored his first international goal back on Aug. 11 in a 3-1 Reggae Boyz victory over Trinidad and Tobago. For New York this season, Richards has registered four goals and three assists in 23 matches. Richards has three goals and two assists in his past five league matches.

Boyens was called up by the New Zealand National Team for their friendlies against Honduras on Oct. 9  in Auckland, New Zealand and versus Paraguay on Oct. 12 in Wellington, New Zealand. Boyens, who was part of New Zealand’s 2010 World Cup squad that went unbeaten in South Africa, has earned 15 caps for his country.

Coundoul has been called up by Senegal for their Oct. 9 match against Mauritius in Dakar, Senegal. Coundoul has four caps for Senegal, with his latest coming on Aug. 11 in a 1-0 friendly victory over Cape Verde Islands. In his second season with New York, Coundoul has posted a record of 13-7-5 with a goals against average of 1.08. He has registered 10 shutouts this season, which is a franchise record for shutouts in a single season.

REAM LEADING THE WAY: New York Rookie of the Year candidate Tim Ream continues to lead Major League Soccer in minutes played by outfield players. The St. Louis, Missouri native has played all 2430 available minutes of the Red Bulls’ 27 matches in 2010. Drew Moor of the Colorado Rapids has also played 2430 minutes this season.

RICHARDS ON FIRE: Dane Richards is enjoying the best spell of his career. In his past six matches, the Jamaican speedster has registered four goals and two assists. Altogether, Richards has four goals and three assists in 23 games played in 2010. For his career, Richards has 12
goals and 17 assists in 101 career regular season matches.

PETKE NINTH ALL-TIME IN GAMES PLAYED: Red Bulls defender Mike Petke came off the bench to help solidify a 1-0 victory over Kansas City on Saturday, and with the appearance, moved into ninth place all alone on the all-time games played list in Major League Soccer history.

GAMES PLAYED, MLS-ALL-TIME
PLAYER (TEAM), GP

1. Steve Ralston (NE), 378
2. Jeff Cunningham (DAL)*, 341
3. Jaime Morena (DC)*, 338
4. Chris Klein (LA)*, 332
5. Jesse Marsch (CHV), 321
6. Chris Henderson (NY), 317
7. Carey Talley (NY)*, 315
8. Jay Heaps (NE), 314
9. Mike Petke (NY)*, 307
10. Cobi Jones (LA), 306
(Players listed with last team played for, Active players marked by *)

RED BULLS UNDER-18’S TO FACE U.S. UNDER-17 SQUAD OCT 9: Red Bull New York announced that the Red Bulls U-18 Academy team will host the United States Under-17 National Team at Red Bull Arena immediately following the Red Bulls tilt with Real Salt Lake on Saturday, October 9. The Red Bulls vs. Real Salt Lake match is slated for a 4:00 PM ET kickoff time, with the U-18 Academy vs. U.S. U-17 game beginning at the conclusion of the first match.

The U.S. U-17 team features two Red Bulls Academy players, defender Russell Canouse (Lancaster, PA) and forward Adam Najem (Clifton, NJ).  Red Bulls Academy goalkeeper Santiago Castano recently returned from the U.S. U-17 residency program and competed for the Red Bulls U-18 Academy in its 2-1 victory over Mexican Club Atlas U-16 on September 11 at Red Bull Arena.

Past members of the U.S. U-17 residency program from the Red Bulls Academy include forward Juan Agudelo. Agudelo competed with the U.S U-17 team at the 2009 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Nigeria. Agudelo, who signed with the New York First Team under MLS’ Home Grown Player on March 26, has gone on to represent the United States at the U-20 level, helping the team to the 2010 Milk Cup title, where he scored in the final over host Northern Ireland. Academy goalkeeper Keith Cardona (Glen Rock, NJ) also represented the United States at the 2009 U-17 World Cup in Nigeria.

For more information on the New York Red Bulls Academy please visit: www.redbullsacademy.com .

ECUADOR-COLOMBIA TO PLAY OCT. 8 AT RBA: The South American national teams of Ecuador and Colombia will continue their rivalry in the New York metropolitan area by facing off on Friday, October 8, at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ at 8:30 p.m. ET, Soccer United Marketing (SUM) announced. The match, which will be played during an official FIFA window, allows the teams to call-up their internationally-based players and will be both teams’ first match up at the new Red Bull Arena.   Tickets are on sale by calling 1-877-RBSOCCER, logging onto www.redbullarena.us or visiting the Red Bull Arena Box Office, Delgado Travel stores and other usual tiendas in the metropolitan area.

Fans and media are encouraged to use public transportation provided by New Jersey Transit and via the PATH train to arrive at Red Bull Arena, the 25,000-seat home of Major League Soccer’s New York Red Bulls. Please visit www.njtransit.com and www.panynj.gov/path/ for train stations and schedules or www.redbullarena.us site for more information.  

START TIME FOR OCT. 9 MATCH VS REAL SALT LAKE CHANGED:    The start time for the Red Bulls’ Oct. 9 match against Real Salt Lake at Red Bull Arena has been changed to 4:00 PM ET. The match will be broadcast on MSG and TeleFutura.  

SOLO FUTBOL AIRS SUNDAY:  Red Bulls WADO 1280 AM and 92.7 FM announcers Ernesto Motta and Robert Sierra host their weekly call-in radio show, Solo Futbol, on Sunday night from 8-11 PM on WADO 1280 AM. Motta, Sierra and their panel of experts and guests analyze the Beautiful Game and the New York Red Bulls.