Two days after ending the regular season on a high note, the New York Red Bulls got back to work and took part in their first training session since defeating Orlando City SC and winning the Supporters’ Shield.
“It feels good getting back to work,” Head Coach Chris Armas said. “We have taken a couple of days to enjoy the accomplishment of this team, but we are back to work.”
Midfielder Tyler Adams spoke with reporters after training and talked a bit about celebrating an important team accomplishment, but having to turn the page quickly to the next task at hand, which is to win MLS Cup.
“For me personally it is easy to change gears and at the end of the day this club has already won the Supporter’s Shield,” Adams said. “For me it doesn’t really matter, it is about winning the first MLS Cup and continuing to make history.”
The Red Bulls have now won the Supporters’ Shield three times since 2013, but will now look to finish as the top team in all of MLS, something that has never been done in franchise history. According to Armas, the team isn’t too focused on the past, but more so on this current club, and having what it takes to win it all.
“We feel a desire and a strong hunger to go after this,” Armas said. “We are looking for our first MLS Cup. We think, and I have said it recently, that this team on the inside we know is the best team that we have ever had, so that’s what we are focused on more an optimistic approach, more of what we have and what we accomplished more than we maybe have not done in previous years.”
A few key players, including Adams, were not a part of the last Supporters’ Shield winning club (Derrick Etienne, Jr. and Aaron Long), but for Adams this season feels even more special to be able to share the field with players who have moved up in the system like he has, and are now playing key roles on the first team.
“It feels really good whenever you can share the field with a lot of the guys that you have developed with and came up the system with,” Adams said. “It is a good feeling. To be a part of making history with that USL team and seeing how far a lot of these guys have come, it’s really exciting and to have an opportunity to do that again at the MLS stage is really special.”
Even though the Red Bulls finished with the best record in MLS history, Adams knows that in order to win in the playoffs, they will have to continue to grow as a unit.
“At the end of the day we know that if we do play well, we are going to be able to beat a lot of teams, but there are things that we can work on every single day and find the weaknesses in our game,” Adams said. “We are going to have to continue to grow.”