There were many takeaways from the gritty performance by the Red Bulls in Saturday's 1-1 draw against the Columbus Crew SC, but there was a major bright spot that head coach Jesse Marsch wanted to emphasize, and that was the play of center back Hassan Ndam.
Ndam was in the Starting XI for the second straight match, his first in league play, and once again performed well, much to the delight of Marsch.
"It is another really good performance from Hassan Ndam, and this is not an easy place to come to play," Marsch said. "He played great, and it's another great example of a young guy who steps in when it's necessary and does a really good job. So he should really build this into what he does now and hopefully we can find more opportunities for him to contribute to the team."
Marsch wasn't the only person impressed with Ndam's performance, he also caught the eye of the Red Bulls Captain, Luis Robles.
"One thing that really was the highlight of the whole thing is that Hassan Ndam continues to play well, continues to grow in confidence and even got more minutes," Robles said. "It's a real positive when guys have an opportunity to play, they play well and make a difference."
After the match, Ndam spoke about how much his confidence has grown being in the starting lineup, and how he's not taking this opportunity for granted.
"I felt great, but I don't want to take anything for granted," Ndam said. "I just keep staying humble, working hard and showing in practice what I can do. I'm just waiting for more opportunities, but I don't want to be too cocky and say I have to start. I'm just working hard and showing the staff I can be there, and anytime they need me, I can step up."
Although on the stat sheet it shows the Red Bulls only came away with a tie against Columbus, there were many positives the team took away from tonight's match.