ProSoccerTalk.com released its weekly Starting XI Monday and two Red Bulls, Joel Lindpere and Dax McCarty, have locked down midfield roles.
Lindpere kicked off the scoring in Sunday's 3-2 win over the Union on the road at PPL Park. It was a textbook play, made all the better by a beautifully placed ball by Mehdi Ballouchy that helped make Lindpere's shot on goal all the easier. Still, the finish was nothing short of perfect, and definitely a must-watch if you haven't seen it yet
(or want to see it again).
McCarty, by his own admission, has played a less flashy game but one that came about out of necessity. The 25-year-old has locked down and taken ownership of the defensive midfield role since Thierry Henry was forced out of the lineup with a hamstring injury in the Apr. 28 match against the New England Revolution.
Since then, McCarty has received heaps of praise for his play that helped lead the Red Bulls to three-straight shutouts and, just this past Sunday, extend their win streak to four straight. Even then, the return of Rafa Marquez required a bit of a shift for McCarty, who has undoubtedly shown his versatility while the team continues to work its way through the injury bug.
PST's Steve Davis had this to say about McCarty
McCarty sure knows how to keep the party going, as the man’s outstanding run of form helped New York squeeze out a 1-0 win over Houston and then go take all the points over the weekend at Philly. (McCarty even played in a different position in that one, accommodating Rafa Marquez’s return to the lineup by moving forward in the starting arrangement.)
Weekly Starting XI nominations aren't a formal award by any means, but it's definitely nice to see two hard-working guys getting some acknowledgment for their continued efforts.