Tainio bicycles his way to the MLS Save of the Week

Defender clears ball off line, keeps Red Bulls in game at Portland

Tainio Save of the Week

Photo Credit: 
Craig Mitchelldyer

Who says bicycle kicks are just for offense?

The New York Red Bulls’ Teemu Tainio opted to use one on defense
against the Portland Timbers last weekend, which not only saved a goal,
but earned him the MLS Save of the Week honors for Week 14.

The Finnish defender was Johnny-on-the-spot when Portland’s Kenny
Cooper beat goalkeeper Greg Sutton to a cross in the 57th minute and
headed the ball on goal. Tainio leapt in the air and used a bicycle kick
to clear the ball off the goal line and away from danger. His
acrobatics, which held the Red Bulls’ deficit at just one, allowed them
to salvage a point on the road after a stoppage-time penalty kick from
Dwayne De Rosario tied the game at three.

Tainio, who earned 60 percent of the votes, won comfortably over
second-place finisher Dan Kennedy of Chivas USA, who denied a shot from
FC Dallas’ Fabián Castillo. He becomes the third non-'keeper to win Save
of the Week honors this season, joining Red Bulls teammate Tim Ream
(Week 8) and the Galaxy tandem of Landon Donovan and A.J. DeLaGarza
(Week 11) in that category.

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Final Results:

1. Teemu Tainio (NY), 60%

2. Dan Kennedy (CHV, vs Castillo, FCD), 21%

3. Sean Johnson (CHI, 15%

4. Dan Kennedy (CHV, vs Hernández, FCD), 2%

5. Matt Reis (NE), 2%