Top Stories

Red Bulls vs. Real Salt Lake: Match Day Commentary

6a00e54ef2975b883301310ff11370970c-120wiSaltlake

The New York Red Bulls take on defending MLS Cup champion Real Salt Lake today at Red Bull Arena (4pm, Telefutura/MSG) in a match-up that just might wind up being an MLS Cup Final preview.

The Red Bulls are in first place in the Eastern Conference and can open up a four-point lead on Columbus with a win today. Real Salt Lake has its own aspirations of moving into first place, and must win today to stay within striking distance of the Los Angeles Galaxy.

I will be providing commentary on today's match so please feel free to follow along here. As always, you are welcome to share your own thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action (Commentary is after the jump):

—————————

FINAL– That's all for me. Thanks for following along here and pleae feel free to share your post-game thoughts on the match in the comments section below. Also, be sure to check out our live commentary on tonight's USA-Poland friendly. Enjoy your day. 

————————— 

FINAL– Red Bulls 0, Real Salt Lake 0. Fair result and a very entertaining and well-played match between a pair of legitimate title contenders.

————————— 

93rd Minute– Agudelo earns a corner kick. Last chance here.

————————— 

90th Minute– For those unfamiliar with Agudelo, he's a U.S. Under-20 national team striker considered one of the better Academy products coming up in MLS.

Three minutes of added time.

————————— 

89th Minute– Agudelo's first touch nearly sets up a goal. He wasted no time making an impact. The kid's got a bright future. 

————————– 

88th Minute– Red Bulls youngster Juan Agudelo is set to make his MLS debut. He comes in for Tchani.

————————— 

 87th Minute– Today's match definitely won't hurt Tim Ream's chances of winning MLS Rookie of the Year. He's been very good all day.

—————————

82nd Minute– SAVE SUTTON, stops a dangerous Morales free kick.

—————————

81st Minute– Tim Ream with another solid intervention. He's arguably been the man of the match for New York today. Lindpere has also played well.

—————————

77th Minute– Grabavoy is in for Williams.

Nice sequence from RSL is halted by a solid challenge by Ream. Real Salt Lake will look to find a winner now. Don't think either team wants to settle for a tie, though it would be a fair scoreline at this point.

—————————

75th Minute– Better from Morales, and Paulo Araujo has been active since coming in, an upgrade over Finley.

Ned Grabavoy is coming in.

—————————

73rd Minute– Marquez has done a good job of neutralizing Morales today, leaving Saborio to drop back to try and generate some offense.

New York isn't creating a ton now either, with Henry relatively quiet the past 15 minutes.

—————————

69th Minute– Angel with a streaking header just over. He's had a handful of those today.

—————————

67th Minute– Paulo Araujo set to come in for RSL. He'll replace Findley, who was largely invisible.

—————————

64th Minute– Tchani is struggling today. What some folks don't realize is that he really isn't a natural defensive midfielder. His physical attributes allow him to do okay there, but he's not really a polished player at that position and is more offensive-minded than you realize.

—————————

 62nd Minute– Marquez streaks into the area with a clear look, but can't get a shot off. Wasted chance for NY.

Game has slowed a bit as teams tire from a pretty fast-paced match.

—————————

59th Minute– Findley skies a shot into the stands. Yes, just like the World Cup, minus the vuvuzelas.

—————————

57th Minute– Miller caught a left hook from Saborio and goes down. No card, seemed somewhat accidental. When will the Tico on Tico violence stop?

—————————

53rd Minute– Red Bulls have done a good job of keeping Saborio and Finley quiet today. Morales has largely been neutralized today.

—————————

50th Minute– Quite a few Real Salt Lake fans in attendance. Not sure how many of them are New York-based friends and family of the team and how many actually made the trip. Nice to see.

—————————

49th Minute– Jair Marrufo hasn't exactly had a good game today. Wonder if Rafa Marquez hooked him up with a jersey before the match.

—————————

47th Minute– ESC is chanting "DC REJECT" at Nick Rimando. Seems they forgot about the five minutes he spent with the Red Bulls.

—————————

46th Minute– And we're back. No subs.

—————————

HALFTIME– Red Bulls 0, Real Salt Lake 0. No score yet, but you won't see many more entertaining scoreless first halfs. Both teams played well and had chances. RSL will probably feel a bit more unlucky having hit the frame twice, and having Saborio clipped right on the edge of the penalty area. 

—————————

45th Minute– Shouts for a handball on Olave in the area. Definitely a handball, but missed. And yes, it's always funny to see Thierry Henry complain when a handball isn't called.

—————————

45th Minute– Dangerous free kick for New York, about 27 yards out, straight on goal. Marquez territory.

—————————

44th Minute– The Red Bulls wall does its job, Morales can't get the free kick over.

Miller with the yellow card for taking down his Costa Rican national team teammate. He'll miss New York's next match due to yellow card accumulation.

—————————

43rd Minute– Saborio is taken down on the edge of the area on a clear breakaway. Clipped his leg just outside the box. DANGEROUS free kick for Morales, straight on goal, 18 yards out.

—————————

42nd Minute– If you're following along with my commentary, please let me know in the comments section, and let me know where you're following from.

—————————

41st Minute– Marquez and Johnson have been in a fiesty battle all day. Actually, it's been more Marquez taking shots at Johnson. Don't be surprised if those two get into it before the day is done.

—————————

40th Minute– Angel springs free for a clear header, but he mis-hits it. Wasted chance from about 14 yards out.

—————————

40th Minute– One thing you can usually do vs. RSL is find some space to operate on the flanks given neither Williams or Johnson are true wingers. They leave space out wide and New York is trying to take advantage. So far unsuccessful.

Yellow cards to Olave and Albright for a shoving match. Now Beltran gets a yellow for a foul on Lindpere.

—————————

37th Minute– Some good ball movement, but RSL's defense looks fairly comfortable in the final third. New York's passing needs to be a touch sharper.

Red Bulls corner.

—————————

35th Minute– Ballouchy sends a DANGEROUS cross in, but neither Lindpere or Angel could get a head to it.

—————————

34th Minute– RSL's corner kick is headed away for another corner.

—————————

33rd Minute– Henry's passing isn't nearly at his usual level. He's committed quite a few turnovers today on some pretty lazy passes.

—————————

29th Minute– Just like that, Will Johnson is down after being cleated by Marquez. He's walking off now, should be fine.

—————————

27th Minute– The most underrated player on RSL? Has to be Will Johnson, who doesn't get nearly the respect or attention he deserves for being such a talented young player.

RSL's defense is extremely well organized and leaving no gaps for Ballouchy, Lindpere and Henry to exploit.

—————————

25th Minute– Russell hits a shot off the left post that Sutton didn't know much about. Two shots off the frame for RSL so far.

—————————

24th Minute– Right now Tchani is struggling with the defensive responsibilities he has in this formation. He's leaving way too much space in behind for RSL to take advantage of.

Tchani fouls Finley, setting up a free kick on the right flank.

—————————

23rd Minute– Saborio with a hard foul on Marquez. I'm sure it's not the first time those CONCACAF foes do battle.

—————————

22nd Minute– Marquez has a go from about 40 yards out that didn't miss by all that much. Good pace on that shot, though a pass to the box might have been the better move.

—————————

21st Minute– A great display of technical soccer today between two top teams. Couple this with the Seattle-Columbus Open Cup Final earlier in the week and you can see so clearly how much better MLS is getting.

—————————

19th Minute– The two front-runners for MLS Newcomer of the Year on display here, with Joel Lindpere and Alvaro Saborio on the field.

—————————

16th Minute– Some great match-ups on display today. You've got Tim Ream against Robbie Findley, Rafa Marquez vs. Javier Morales and Juan Pablo Angel vs. Nat Borchers.

Right now the Red Bulls almost look like they're in a 4-2-3-1 with Henry wide left and Henry up top, with Ballouchy floating centrally and Lindpere on the right.

——————-Angel———————

Henry————-Ballouchy———Lindpere

————Tchani——-Marquez————-

Miller——Ream——–Mendes——Albright

——————Sutton————————-

—————————

14th Minute– Albright heads the corner wide and it looks like he didn't take that header well and is dazed.

—————————

12th Minute– Henry earns a corner after racing down a ball and having it come off Russell.

—————————

10th Minute– Red Bull Arena looks sort of empty, but having just come in myself, I saw a bunch of late arrivers lined up outside. Not sure what it would take to have Red Bulls fans show up on time (And yes, I know I was late too, but still).

—————————

9th Minute– Andy Williams blasted a shot off the right post for RSL. Red Bulls got lucky on that one.

Henry came right back down on a counter. He's moving well today.

—————————

7th Minute– We're underway here (Apologies for the delay). No score as both sides are feeling each other out. New York with one decent look from Ballouchy.

—————————

4th Minute– Ballouchy with a chance that Rimando collects.

—————————

1st Minute– We're underway.

—————————

PRE-GAME– Here is RSL's lineup, a full-strength squad:

——–Saborio———-Finley————

Johnson———-Morales——–Williams

——————Beckerman—————-

Beltran—–Olave——Borchers—–Beltran

——————Rimando——————–

—————————-

PRE-GAME– Here is the Red Bulls lineup:

————-Angel——–Henry————–

Lindpere—————————–Ballouchy

————-Tchani——-Marquez———–

Miller——Ream———Mendes—-Albright

——————Sutton————————

Ballouchy starts on the right for an absent Dane Richards. He played there quite a bit for Colorado, though it's not his natural position.

—————————-

PRE-GAME– It's a beautiful sunny day in Harrison, New Jersey today for this matinee tilt. The Red Bulls will be without Dane Richards and Bouna Coundoul today. Lineups coming shortly.

—————————



Comments

  1. Ives, go check RSL’s facebook and tell me that arrogant NY fans aren’t having a go at RSL.

    It’s amazing that fans from such a big city can have such an inferiority complex.

    Reply
  2. I was gratified to be at this game. On the question of attendance, the stadium was fuller toward the end of the match than at the beginning, though I was also a little disappointed at the number of empty seats. It seemed to me that the eastern part of the upper deck in particular was pretty sparsely populated. I don’t think the 20,300-some number that they posted was actually met in heads counted, but they did get a decent crowd, I thought.

    As for the quality of the pitch, I’m afraid I have to come close to agreeing with Hincha Tim. I was noticing the painfully clear wear on the north-side touchline, and sometimes, when people went in for tackles, I saw definite puffs of dust get kicked up. The pitch looked rather patchy in some spots. I wonder if this is partly because it got some kind of rough treatment in the Ecuador-Colombia game the day before, but one fixture wouldn’t have been enough to do that kind of damage. Has downstate been through as much of a dry spell as we had upstate before last week? I hope the groundskeepers can figure out what’s going on to fix it for next season at least.

    Reply
  3. Ives, what part of my comment are petty? My comment concerning the attendance was based on what I saw on TV which was at least over half empty seats on all the shots I saw. If you don’t believe me, go watch a replay of the TV coverage. I saw the attendance was listed at over 20k, which makes me wonder about the accuracy of that, or if its just that most of the lower seats in the stadium are the ones that are were not filled.

    In a metro area that is at least 10x that of RSL’s, not being able to get 25k or more on a Saturday against another top flight team in the first year of a new stadium when your team is in first place to me is troubling. I would hope that tickets would be hard to get for a game like that. You imply I made negative comments about the atmosphere. I did not. In fact it sounded like a good atmosphere there. It would have been better if it was a sell out, which is not too much to ask for the flagship franchise.

    The pitch looked awful and both teams were slipping. I don’t know how that’s petty.

    I’m don’t snipe against NY. However, I don’t think you realize the bias you bring to your reporting when it comes to covering the NYRBs.

    (SBI-Tim, you offered up an unsolicited list of jabs about New York and in the past you always seem obligated to make negative swipes at New York and/or me and my coverage of them and RSL. How is that not going to be seen as petty? Your swipe about my biased reporting isn’t all that surprising given your history of comments, but you really seem to get irrational when New York is involved. I wish I knew why. How about trying something novel like talking about your own team? They’re the best team in MLS. How about you focus on that instead of perpetuating what sure sounds like an inferiority complex.

    Please don’t get mad at me Tim. I don’t want you planting anything in my luggage next time I’m in Utah. LOL)

    Reply
  4. You kidding me? Your stadium has 20k and usually doesn’t sell out. RBA is 25k and usually doesn’t sell out. I see a 14k at Rio Tinto against the Fire the other week. RBNY averages more fans than RSL and has been getting 20k consistently lately. I don’t even care to take jabs at RSL because I think they’re done a good job but that’s a ridiculous outburst.

    Reply
  5. Tim Ream had an excellent match. I will be a crime if he is not Rokkie of the Year.

    Fun match. Hoping Red Bull hang on to 1st place in Eastern Conference.

    Reply
  6. 2 players that each make two times the entire salary of the team they played were unable to score. That is absolutely despicable, what’s the point of paying that much for players?

    Reply
  7. 1) Crappy pitch. For supposedly being a first class facility the NYRB’s should be ashamed to have a pitch in that state.

    2) Looks like SBI’s free tickets (2) comprised about half the crowd. Pretty bad when you have the largest Metro area in the league and can’t even come close to filling the stadium on a weekend.

    3) Actually, RSL did not play very well. The midfield played well below their usual standards. They definitely looked tired.

    (SBI-Tim, you’re my boy and all, but I wonder if you realize how petty and how much of a hater you come off as with your constant sniping about New York. Cheer up buddy, you guys won the MLS Cup. You shouldn’t have nearly as much angst and hostility toward NY as you seem to. It’s not like New York fans are having a go at RSL like they do Philly or DC.

    As for the stadium, and your jabs about the attendance, until you actually come here you might want to consider that you really have no sense of what the atmosphere is like at Red Bull Arena. It wasn’t a sellout but the crowd was great after filling out over the course of the first 20 minutes. There were quite a few RSL fans in attendance. I’m willing to bet most of them will have positive things to say about the atmosphere at Red Bull Arena.)

    Reply

Leave a Comment