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MLS- New York Red Bulls

Rapids vs. Red Bulls: Match Night Commentary

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The New York Red Bulls are at home tonight, hoping to snap their recent funk and hoping to turn around a season that is slowly becoming another nightmare for a snakebit franchise.

In comes the Colorado Rapids, enjoying a solid season and hoping to keep up the success against the Red Bulls they enjoyed last year, when they swept both meetings.

I will be providing commentary throughout the match so feel free to follow along here. If you will be watching, you are more than welcome to share your own thoughts and opinions on the match in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action:

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FINAL– Rapids 3, Red Bulls 2. The funk continues and the Red Bulls play another game where they had their moments, but had too many bad ones to come away with a point, let alone victory. This team shoots itself in the foot more than any Red Bulls/Metros team I can remember. The 1999 team was just flat awful. This Red Bulls team is nowhere near as bad as this record, but it just isn't doing enough to win.

Here's one thought I'll leave folks with. The Rapids are now in second place in the West while the REd Bulls are in last place in the East. The difference between these teams? Conor Casey is finishing his chances and Juan Pablo Angel is not. If Angel was playing like the 2007 Angel, the Red Bulls would be doing much better than they are now. Then again, if Alfredo Pacheco wasn't good for one goal-inducing blunder a game, the Red Bulls would also have many more points than they do now.

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92nd minute– Kandji with a chance, but turns it on his left and mis-hits one. That was probably it.

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91st minute– Wolyniec chested one down and for a second it looked like he might conjure up some magic. Not this time.

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90th minute– The Red Bulls attack did enough tonight, but the defense laid the egg, letting Conor Casey torch them yet again.

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89th minute– Four minutes of stoppage time.

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87th minute– John Wolyniec is on for Seth Stammler. Can he provide some more late-game magic?

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86th minute– Greg Dalby has replaced Omar Cummings and Colorado has moved into a 4-5-1. They will look to hold on to this lead.

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85th minute– Given Casey's form this season you have to wonder when or if he'll get a national team look. A Gold Cup roster spot might not be that far-fetched an idea at this rate.

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83rd minute– Clock is ticking. Rapids are controlling things now. Where will a Red Bulls chance come from?

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81st minute– Terry Cooke comes on for Scott Palguta. LaBrocca drops to right back, Ihemelu to centerback and Harvey to left back.

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80th minute– The Rapids midfield has to be one of the more underrated units in the league. They've done a great job today.

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77th minute– Angel sails the free kick over.

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76th minute– Kandji draws another free kick. The Rapids can't handle the Kandji Man.

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74th minute– Angel with the hard free kick that Pickens spills. Borman does well to finish it. Red Bulls look inspired right now. Can they pull it off?

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72nd minute- GOAL RED BULLS!!!!! Borman on the rebound tap-in. Rapids 3, Red Bulls 2.

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71st minute– Yellow on Harvey for grabbing Kandji. Free kick from about 32 yards away.

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69th minute– Stammler MISSED a wide-open header in front of goal. Wow.

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68th minute– Red Bulls in a 3-5-2 now. Will we see some magic from Kandji now? And Angel has been largely invisible since that early-game chance he had saved.

12,039 in the house tonight. Not a bad looking crowd actually.

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65th minute– Danleigh Borman is coming on. Might we see Kandji move up top now? I'd say it's time.

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63rd minute– Two goals down, will the Red Bulls fall apart, or show some heart? How they respond could determine whether this season gets 1999 ugly, or if there will be some reason for hope beyond this game.

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59th minute- GOAL RAPIDS!!! Mehdi Ballouchy converts it. Rapids 3, Red Bulls 1.

The penalty was called on Celades on a foul on Cummings. The foul was legit, but it was at the top corner of the area. Not sure about that one.

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58th minute– PENALTY. Rapids get one. Questionable call.

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56th minute– Sassano is on for Pacheco.

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54th minute– The game has lost its rhythm and the Red Bulls are struggling to find the ball. They need some possession to settle things down.

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48th minute- GOAL RAPIDS!!!!! And it's COnor Casey again. He's abused the Red Bulls one more time. Just awful defending there. Rapids 2, REd Bulls 1.

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HALFTIME– Red Bulls 1, Rapids 1. Red Bulls had the better sequences up until the Rapids goal, then things slowed down.

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45th minute– The Red Bulls finally get some luck going their way. The call was a good one, but you were wondering what would get the Red Bulls out of this funk.

Back to Richards, that was a very quick and quality turn on Gibbs by him and you can see why Osorio wanted to use him up top. Gibbs and Harvey can't deal with his quickness.

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45th minute– GOAL RED BULL!!!!! Juan Pablo Angel with the converted PK down the middle. Red Bulls 1, Rapids 1.

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43rd minute– PENALTY!!! Gibbs takes down Richards in the penalty area. Great turn by Richards on that one.

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39th minute– Casey misses with a header by inches. Pacheco was in no-man's land. 2008 Gabriel Cichero=2009 Alfredo Pacheco. There, I said it.

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37th minute– The game has slowed down now and the Rapids have started to keep numbers back.

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34th minute– Red Bulls are doing too much one on one and getting away from the ball movement of the early part of the game.

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30th minute– Rapids corner. Celades and Stammler have struggled lately to get the ball. No possession in the last few minutes for the Red Bulls.

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26th minute– Who would have thought that Red Bulls fans would be looking forward to Pacheco's international call-up?

Now we will see how the Red Bulls respond having to chase the game. Colorado isn't exactly known for holding leads.

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25th minute- GOAL CASEY!!!!! Damn, sorry folks, didn't mean to drop the SBI jinx again. Pacheco gets toasted again. Rapids 1, Red Bulls 0.

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23rd minute– Who will score first here? Red Bulls have been better in the attack, but the Rapids look VERY dangerous on the counter. Casey has that look like he is going to find a goal tonight.

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21st minute– Kandji makes some great move but has it knocked away for a corner. Nothing comes of that one. Kandji is going to score or create a goal.

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20th minute– Ubiparipovic with a careless turnover leading to a Rapids corner. Colorado is so good at getting the ball out to its wingers.

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17th minute– Mastroeni is still shadowing Celades. The Red Bulls need to find Kandji, who is looking to exploit the gaps in the Rapids back-line. He's got the speed to do it, but needs some service.

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16th minute– Drinking games tonight: Kandji stepovers/backheels, Cummings offside and Dane Richards turnovers.

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13th minute– Richards with a bicycle kick off a defender's face. A very entertaining game so far.

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12th minute– Rapids with a second straight corner.

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10th minute– The Rapids have finally figured out that Mastroeni should probably keep track of Kandji rather than Celades.

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10th minute– Richards drops a pass off, but there's nobody making a run.

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9th minute– The Red Bulls must be aware of Cummings, who is the ey to Colorad's counterattack.

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8th minute– Ihmelu is being deployed at right back, with Harvey in central defense. Kandji is finding gaps to make his runs and Colorado has yet to address that situation.

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8th minute– Rapids corner.

Red Bulls are finding chances and will continue to find chances against this Rapids defense. They just need to actually convert one.

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5th minute– Kandji just showed by Osorio likes him behind the strikers, unfortunately for Kandji, he started his run about 30 yards too far back and ran out of gas.

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4th minute– Casey turns Goldthwaite but can't get the ball past Conway. That is going to be a great battle all night.

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2nd minute– Angel has GOT to finish that chance. Promising from Pacheco early on.

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1st minute– Angel shot SAVED by Pickens, a clear look by Angel but he can't beat the keeper. 46 seconds in.

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1st minute– And we're off.

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PRE-GAME- No surprises in the Rapids starting lineup;

—————-Casey———Cummings———–

————————Ballouchy——————–

Clark—————————————LaBrocca

———————–Mastroeni——————–

Palguta——Gibbs——-Ihemelu———-Harvey

————————-Pickens———————–

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PRE-GAME- Yes, that is Mac Kandji in a playmaking role. That's what I've been told we will see tonight. I'm sure it will move around a bunch if it isn't working, but Kandji did look good playing behind the strikers late in the match vs. Chicago.

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PRE-GAME– Here is the Red Bulls starting lineup:

————-Angel————Richards———

———————–Kandji——————–

————–Celades——-Ubiparipovic——

———————Stammler——————-

Pacheco—Goldthwaite–Petke———-Hall

———————-Conway——————–

64 comments
  • TommyH

    Dane Richards is horrible. Sassano is supposed to impact the offense? This season is just awful. When do thet pull thee plug on this guy?
    Did I see Pickens in a GEICO commercial?

    Like

  • Paul

    Perhaps the only good thing abou the mess that is the 2009 season is that it will not sully the new stadium. Here’s to a fresh start in 2010, with a new home and a new coach.

    Sad to be talking this way in May, but there you go.

    Like

  • JoeW

    1. I think the problem with playing a 4-5-1 (anticipating road tactics) is it really requires that you have a couple of guys in midfield (van den Bergh is a brilliant example) who can take advantage of the few opportunities that come up in that formation to hit a killer service that a normally efficient finisher like Angel will kill. This team doesn’t have that (unless Celedes plays less of a d/holding mid role the rest of the year and can stay on the field–even then, he’s just one player).

    2. The team is (it’s obvious now) not well put together. Not all foreign acquisitions will work out–Pacheco may still turn out okay and was worth a shot. But the effort to assemble a track team was a fiasco. And Kandji should be put on the frontline next to Angel and kept there unless injury or cards takes him out. Here’s the deal: Angel clearly isn’t in-form, he’s had injury issues ever since coming to the league (no surprise there–I’m not saying he’s brittle, only that he’s over 30 and is playing at the Meadowlands). Good, effective forwards have confidence. If Angel has to sit, who’s the player on the frontline that becomes the player who KNOWS he’s going to score? Wolyniec is a fine reserve, I don’t think using Richards against some teams as a second forward is necessarily a disaster. But bouncing Kandji around (central mid, outside mid, some forward) gets him minutes but not a clear role and doesn’t help give him a goal-scorer’s arrogance and confidence that he’ll need if Angel isn’t on the field.

    3. I really believed this season that the East would be significantly stronger than the West. I didn’t think TFC would be as good as some folks felt (ie: I never felt they were a contender to win the East). I had no idea how DCU would do though I felt they wouldn’t be last or next to last in the East.

    But given how some of the Western teams are doing (I both thought Colorado and Seattle would be weaker), I wouldn’t be surprised if 5 teams from the West make the playoffs. Right now, you have to be impressed by Seattle, Chivas, Colorado, and Houston and if RSL ever gets their mojo back (basically, a goal scorer to go with Findley), they could be the 5th team.

    For RBNY, it’s easy to say “we’re only 7 points out of a playoff spot–that’s 2 wins and a tie!” But given that about 40% of MLS matches have ended up in draws this year, it looks like it’s incredibly difficult to make up 7 points. In RBNY’s favor, they play 2 matches against FCD, 1 against San Jose, 1 against LAG–all of those are weaker teams. But it’s not as if they have a slew of home games left (I believe it’s split 7-7) and the last 10 games involves a bunch of teams (KC, Columbus, RSL, Colorado, NE) that will likely either be fighting hard to make the playoffs or not assured of a #1 or #2 seed and in playoff position (ie: Chivas) but not in a position to coast and rest starters. In short–a very tough last 10 games to try and makeup ground.

    Like

  • kebzach

    Soccer By Ives: now even more restrictive on comments! New and improved, one step short of communism!

    Like

  • Ben!

    Ives, your Colorado sloppiness continues. Palguata and Gibbs played centerback, Harvey and Ihemelu were left and right backs respectively.

    I don’t know much about your team and you don’t know much about mine. The difference, I don’t write the preeminent soccer blog in the country.

    Like

  • Ives

    Kebzach, classless comments and comments posted purely to incite other readers (trolling as it were) will be removed. That’s not a new thing and isn’t going to change.

    And, Ben, give me a break with my “Colorado sloppiness”, early in the game I saw Harvey in what looked like a central defense position with Palguta on the left. Palguta has played left back in his career so it didn’t seem that far-fetched to me. I flip-flopped two defenders, settle down. Spare me the “You don’t know the Rapids” nonsense.

    Like

  • Mastro

    Mateschitz owner of RBNY and his Managing Director Erik Stover GODFATHER JC OSORIO……shame for NJ-NY FANS.
    Will see after Thursday game against DC, WHAT HAPPENS….LOl this is a joke OSORIO COACHING STYLE, very lucky was Chicago without him. ALWAYS METROS PICKUP WHAT REST DON’T WANT HAHAHAAAAA

    Like

  • Will Smith

    Angel’s free kicks looked like he was trying out for the NY Giants. He was terrible last night & has been all season. Sure, his service hasn’t been great, but even when he’s gotten service, he’s been terrible.

    Like

  • Stone

    No more. No more season tickets for me. They’re too expensive to watch children play at half time and high school players during actual play. Red Bulls are just pathetic.

    Like

  • Will Smith

    Any of the kids playing at half time showed a better a touch than Richards did.

    Like

  • Stone

    +1 Will Smith. I used to like to watch football…still do I suppose, but just not the gameplay that I see week after week from the Red Bulls.

    I know the refs leave a little to be desired, to say the least, but are fouls really the only way we’re going to be able to win? How many times does Richards have to raise his hands in the air while looking at the ref, hoping to get a foul called in his favor? Just play ball already!

    Our guys are out there staring at the ball more often than trying to actually get to it. And if they do get to it, they kick it as hard as they can…anywhere really, it doesn’t seem to matter as long as they get rid of the thing. Kick it anywhere and hope that someone gets to it. They really do look like the little kids at halftime out there.

    And we all wonder why soccer is not a more popular sport in this country. There are more people that come to see their kids at halftime than come to see the Red Bulls. Its not a sport, its a daycare service.

    Like

  • inkedAG

    I’m not gonna state the obvious about Osorio and his lineups and signings…

    Like

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