It took three matches for Ryan Meara to earn his first-career MLS victory, and the setting couldn’t have been better.
Ideally, if Meara had it his way, he’d have bagged his first ‘W’ in the season opener against FC Dallas. But in front of over 500 friends and family from his hometown Yonkers, NY, and soon-to-be alma mater at Fordham University, the 21-year-old had plenty of support in the home crowd when he backstopped the Red Bulls to a 4-1 win over the Colorado Rapids Sunday afternoon.
“It would’ve been perfect if we kept a clean sheet, but we’ll settle for the win, a 4-1 win,” Meara said after the match. “We played great. The first two games we played well in 20-minute spurts here and there, but [Sunday] we thought we really put together a full 90 minutes.”
It also didn’t hurt that New York burst right out of the gate when Thierry Henry scored his first of the season within the first three minutes, followed shortly after by Kenny Cooper in the sixth. The early lead would prove to be all Meara would need by match’s end, but two more New York goals made sure of it.
“With Thierry and Kenny, I wouldn’t want to be in goal facing them,” Meara said with a smile. “They’re dangerous players and they were great [Sunday].”
Meara not only registered his first win, but he was also named the AT&T Man of the Match thanks to his four-save performance. He was quick to admit it was a lighter day for him than what he faced in previous matches, but that’s not exactly a bad thing.
“Out of the three games, this is the game I was the least busy in, which is good,” Mears said. “I don’t mind when I’m busy and have stuff to do, but at the end of the day I’ll take the first win of the season and go from here, build some momentum into Saturday.”
The Red Bulls host the expansion side Montreal Impact Saturday at 4pm ET in the second home match of the season. Tickets start as low as $20! Get yours at Red Bulls Ticket Central or by calling 877.RB.SOCCER.