Red Bulls head coach Juan Carlos Osorio would have much preferred his team scrimmage against the Red Bulls Salzburg reserves on Saturday (that could now happen on Monday) but Osorio did get plenty of use from the intra-squad scrimmage his team played on Satuday.
Claudio Reyna, Dane Richards and Juan Pablo Angel looked very sharp in the attack while the projected starting back three of Carlos Mendes, Jeff Parke and Kevin Goldthwaited played very well as a unit. These were just some of the bright spots. Here is a rundown of the match, who did well and who didn’t do well:
Here is how the lineups looked (Jon Conway and Zach Thornton alternated teams for a half each):
———Van Den Bergh——-Stammler————
(Apologies for listing Freeman before. Goldthwaite started at left back. Freeman is with the U.S Under-23 national team.)
Here is how the goals broke down:
The reserves scored first when Jerrod Laventure converted a turnover into a goal. Nice finish, not much of a buildup.
Reyna opened the scoring for the startes when he ran onto a Dane Richards cross and volleyed home from close range.
Angel made it 2-1 for the starters when also finished a perfect low cross from Richards on the right flank again.
Echeverry made it 3-1 when Reyna found him on the back post with a perfectly-floated cross from the right flank.
Marmol, who played the first half with the reserves, came on as a sub for the starters in the second half and stole the show with a 30-yard blast that made it 4-1 to the starters.
Teddy Niziolek came in for Marmol on the reserve squad while Mike Magee replaced Michael Palacio. Marmol replaced Mendoza midway through the second half, with Van Den Bergh sliding to left wing. The back lines for the teams switched sides late in the match.
Now, for some SBI player observations:
Claudio Reyna– The captain was the best player today. He delivered sharp passes all over the field and was able to spring the forwards with several good passes. He worked well with Van Den Bergh and Stammler in central midfield.
Juan Pablo Angel- Always a competitor, Angel only knows one speed, full speed. His class always shows and it did today. He and Echeverry played well off each other. They have already established a good understanding despite only spending a few weeks playing together.
Lider Marmol– A big player with good passing touch and a dangerous shot, Marmol made several quality passes and won his share of challenges playing against the first team in the first half. In the second half he fit right in alongside Reyna and Stammler. If signed, he would also give the team depth in central defense, where his strength and passing ability could make him a starter there as well.
Will he be signed? Assuming that the Chicago Fire don’t really have a discovery option on him, I think Marmol is a lock to sign. If Chicago has a claim then things could get ugly. Here is what I find interesting. In order for Chicago to have a claim on Marmol for the new season it would have had to file a new claim in December. If the Fire did file a new claim in December, did it do so with an eye toward signing him, or did the Fire do it as a way to prevent Osorio from signing him with the Red Bulls.
Dave Van Den Bergh– I’m sure plenty of people were wondering how this would work out. His performance was sharp from an offensive standpoint. He passes well in tight spaces and can deliver the pin-point long pass. There is no question he reads the game well.
The only problem? He doesn’t have the defensive bite you need to be completely effective in a deeper midfield role. He isn’t someone who will win many challenges and isn’t likely to hold off defenders closing in if his passing options are limited. He’s a useful player in central midfield but I really think that if Reyna is playing in the advanced playmaker role, Osorio wants two capable ball-winners behind Reyna. Stammler has one of those jobs locked down and Lider Marmol would have the other if he signs.
Van Den Bergh saw some time on the left flank late in the match and he does still bring that good offense from that side. The lingering question remains whether he can handle the workrate of being a winger in a 3-5-2. We already know he doesn’t have the speed you would like in that spot.
Jesus Mendoza– A thoroughly unremarkable performance from the Mexican trialist. He didn’t see much of the ball and when he did get the ball he didn’t do much with it. Based on what I have heard, and now have seen, I think it’s safe to say he is NOT the answer on the left wing.
Eric Brunner- The rookie showed some good signs, but also showed signs of being inexperienced. Wasn’t overly vocal or much of an organizer from his center back role but he did hold his own on a couple of battles with Angel. His passing leaves a bit to be desired but the tools are there for him to develop into a good player.
Dane Richards- The kid still has it. I think Richards worked on his crossing in the off-season because his crosses were sharper than I remember them being. He still has the speed and is dangerous, but rookie Danleigh Borman gave him all he could handle.
Kevin Goldthwaite– Looked steady at left back. Rarely put a foot wrong and passed the ball well out of the back. It’s his job to lose, though Scott Palguta has enjoyed a strong camp.
That’s all for now. I’ll offer some more observations on Sunday. It’s evening time in Salzburg and I’m calling it a day (unless something else develops).
Check back in on Sunday as I come to you from Allianz Arena in Munich for the 1860 Munich-Aachen match.
Share your thoughts on any of these observations, and feel free to ask any camp-related questions below.