Houston Dynamo at New York Red Bulls: Matchday

Houston Dynamo at New York Red Bulls: Matchday

Major League Soccer

Houston Dynamo at New York Red Bulls: Matchday

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Good afternoon all. Today is the first match of Western Conference playoff series between the New York Red Bulls and Houston Dynamo (4pm, MSG).

The Red Bulls enter the match as serious underdogs, with three starters out for the year either due to suspension or injury. Red Bulls head coach Juan Carlos Osorio has shaken up his lineup yet again in the quest to find a group of players he can count on. His foreign trio of Gabriel Cichero, Juan Pietravallo and Jorge Rojas have all struggled badly in recent weeks and have all been benched for this match.

I will be providing commentary throughout the match so please check in here for the latest updates and analysis. As always, feel free to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

Enjoy the match (lineups after the jump):

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FINAL– That’s all for now. Be sure to check back in to SBI tonight and tomorrow for complete post-game coverage from the Red Bulls-Dynamo match. Thanks for following along on the commentary.

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FINAL– For those of you wondering, the Red Bulls are 0-2-1 all-time at Robertson Stadium, with losses in the past two visits. Out of those three games, the Red Bulls have managed one goal (scored by none other than Chris Henderson in 2006).

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FINAL– Wolyniec, Sassano and Ubiparipovic were the surprise starts and all three came through with solid performances. Dane Richards was surprisingly quiet today against a team he terrorized the last time out. Dave Van Den Bergh was also kept in check.

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FINAL– Red Bulls 1, Dynamo 1. Kei Kamara scored late to send this series into game tie even. Now the Red Bulls most go to Robertson Stadium and win to win this series.

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90th minute– Two minutes of stoppage time.

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90th minute– Wolyniec with a beautiful turn and shot, but Onstad saves it with a great diving stop

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87th minute– The Dynamo look energized now and the Red Bulls look nervous.

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86th minute– Jimenez couldn’t clear the ball away after Barrett sent in a dangerous cross and Kamara pounces from close range to tie the score. That’s a crushing blow for the Red Bulls.

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85th minute- GOAL HOUSTON!!! Kei Kamara!

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85th minute– Nothing comes from the kick but Houston is pressing right now.

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85th minute– Dynamo corner kick

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84th minute– Cameron in for DeRosario.

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82nd minute– Cepero races off his line to beat Kamara to the ball. Cepero has looked very confident today. Not a bad playoff debut so far.

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80th minute– Can the Red Bulls find a second goal? Will we see Mac Kandji today? I think we should.

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79th minute– Ubiparipovic definitely put in a good day’s work (from a hustle and work rate standpoint).

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77th minute– Pietravallo in for Ubiparipovic. The line is 3-1 on Pietravallo getting a card before full time.

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72nd minute– The attendance is 11,578, or twice as many as New England had for the Revs-Chicago Fire playoff game.

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71st minute– Holden in for Mullan.

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70th minute– Goldthwaite has done well today and Leitch has kept Brad Davis quiet today.

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69th minute– The Red Bulls are holding their own right now and are looking for that second goal. They know a 1-0 lead going into game two isn’t enough to feel comfortable.

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68th minute– It was Kamara for Jaqua.

Richards with some dribbles into the box, but can’t get a good shot off.

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66th minute– DeRosario sends his left-footed shot just wide of the net from about 18.

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64th minute– Kei Kamara looks set to come on. Ching is the likely sub.

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61st minute– WOW, Leitch just sent a shot at goal and missed by inches. That would have been an insane goal from 25.

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58th minute– Angel with a dangerous ball across the goalmouth, but nobody can get to it for the finish.

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57th minute– Wolyniec took a knock but looks ready to come back in.

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56th minute– Houston has settled down and is starting to pressure. Robinson sends a close range shot high.

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53rd minute– Mulrooney clears a Richards shot off the line. Here come the Red Bulls.

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52nd minute– Cepero with a good save on the header.

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49th minute– Wolyniec with the great pass on the goal. Osorio’s decision looks good for now.

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48th minute- GOAL RED BULLS!!!! Angel heads home a Wolyniec ball ins. Red Bulls 1, Dynamo 0

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47th minute– DeRosario with an early test of Cepero and Cepero was up to it.

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HALFTIME– No subs at halftime. We’re about to get under way.

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HALFTIME– We are scoreless. The Red Bulls have shown good fight, but have not looked very dangerously. Diego Jimenez looks pretty shaky out there today and you can bet the Dynamo will be going after him.

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45th minute– Cepero comes up big twice in a minute.

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43rd minute– The Red Bulls have shown toughness and have passed well in midfield, but they haven’t created chances and their defense has looked shaky at times.

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41st minute– Dane Richards sends a wide-open header high off a Wolyniec header pass. What a chance wasted.

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40th minute– This game has gotten very testy and it will be interesting to see if this lights a fire under the Red Bulls.

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38th minute– Angel gets a yellow for a head challenge against Mulrooney. Wow, what a bad call that was. Stott has lost the plot.

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37th minute– Kevin Stott has never been shy about giving out cards, but today it’s as if he left his cards home.

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36th minute– Jaqua headed Boyens on a clash in the air. Looked pretty ugly. Jaqua lucky not to get a card.

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35th minute– We’ve got a fight.

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33rd minute– Dynamo come very close when DeRosario sends a dangerous ball across goal that nobody latches on to. Jimenez started that sequence with a failed slide tackle attempt.

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32nd minute– Houston has its swimming caps on today. A stiff breeze has them on the turf every time.

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30th minute– Yellow cards for Richards and Mullan. Richards got one for fouling Mulrooney. Mullan was carded for confronting Richards.

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29th minute– Jimenez looks like an accident waiting to happen today. Ching looks like a good bet to score today.

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27th minute– Houston has Richard Mulrooney at right back today and he is definitely a more dangerous option going forward than Craig Waibel. He has also done well to keep Van Den Bergh quiet so far.

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25th minute– Neither team has taken control yet. The Red Bulls have moved the ball around, but have yet to really test Onstad.

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17th minute– Jimenez with an awful error, passing it right to DeRosario, but Houston can’t capitalize.

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15th minute– Here comes a Dynamo corner.

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14th minute– For those wondering, John Wolyniec has not scored a goal this year for the senior team, but he has scored eight goals in 12 reserve games.

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13th minute– Houston is picking its spots and showing good patience. They know the pressure is on the Red Bulls.

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12th minute– Sassano just got cleaned out by DeRosario.

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10th minute– Ubiparipovic had a good shot just wide a few minutes ago. He’s looking good early.

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8th minute– Goldthwaite just got cleaned out on a corner kick. He is up.

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7th minute– Dynamo get a good shot but DeRosario’s shot is high.

Robinson gets away with a push on Richards in the box. The corner kick is caught by Onstad.

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5th minute– The Red Bulls look confident early.

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1st minute– We are under way.

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PRE-GAME– Magee is out due to an illness, so maybe he would have been an option in this lineup.

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PRE-GAME– The Red Bulls starting lineup is sure to cause a stir among Red Bulls fans but the decisions to bench Cichero, Pietravallo and Rojas came down to all three players playing very poorly in recent weeks and Osorio not wanting to take a chance on them playing poorly again.

John Wolyniec gets the start ahead of Mac Kandji and Mike Magee, who didn’t make the bench for this one. I thought Kandji should get the start but the Wolyniec move was made to give the Dynamo a physical defender to deal with, as well as a player who has worked well with Angel in the past.

Ubiparipovic got the start in attacking midfield role over Rojas and Magee. Both have been struggling badly recently and Ubiparipovic brings a defensive element to the position that makes him the more attractive option over two attacking players who just haven’t had it down the stretch.

Sassano starts over Pietravallo, who has been a virtual card magnet in recent weeks in defensive midfield. It seemed as though Pietravallo might get the call because of his good track record at home, but Osorio doesn’t want to take the chance. Perhaps the fact that referee Kevin "The Card Machine" Stott is in charge today helped Osorio make this decision.

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PRE-GAME– Here are the lineups:

RED BULLS

—————–Angel———-Wolyniec————–

————————Ubiparipovic——————-

Van Den Bergh——————————–Richards

————————Sassano————————

Goldthwaite—–Jimenez—–Boyens———Leitch

————————–Cepero———————–

BENCH-Boss, Cichero, Kljestan, Pietravallo, Rojas, Roth, Kandji

DYNAMO

—————–Ching———-Jaqua——————

————————DeRosario———————-

Davis——————————————–Mullan

—————————Clark————————–

Barrett——-Robinson——–Boswell——Mulrooney

————————-Onstad————————-

BENCH- Caig, Ianni, Waibel, Ashe, Cameron, Holden, Kamara.

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