Photo by ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
Jamison Olave has been a rock at the back for the New York Red Bulls this season, but the club will have to do without him for at least the next week.
Red Bulls head coach Mike Petke revealed Tuesday afternoon that Olave suffered a mild tear in his left quad in New York’s scoreless draw with the Philadelphia Union this past Saturday. Olave was replaced by Brandon Barklage after suffering the injury late in that match at Red Bull Arena, and an MRI confirmed that the centerback will be forced to miss the upcoming road game vs. Chivas USA, at a minimum.
“It’s a mild tear, it’s not a huge thing, but we’re expecting 10-12 days, which will obviously take him out of the Chivas game,” said Petke. “We definitely didn’t want this but we were going to be having to rest Olave at least a game or two so perhaps [this is the time] to rest his injury right now and perhaps his body because he’s been playing a lot for us.”
Petke also stated that Ibrahim Sekagya, who started next to Olave in central defense vs. the Union, will fill in for the injured Colombian. Sekagya was arguably the Red Bulls’ best player against Philadelphia and Petke expressed confidence in the 32-year-old centerback’s ability.
“Something we’ve loved about Ibrahim since he’s been here, is, with his experience and where he’s played, he reads the game incredibly well,” said Petke. “There was some talk and a little whisper about age and this and that, but … he reminds me of Robin Fraser a bit the last three, four years of his career when perhaps he lost a step from years past but his knowledge of the game is so good that he puts himself in great positions.
“I thought that he did well in that aspect [against the Union]. With the ball at his feet, it’s a great feeling for us to have knowing his capabilities of building out of the back, his vision, and we’re very happy with the way he played.”
Olave’s injury may not be the best of news for a team still contending for the Supporters’ Shield, but it comes at a favorable time in the Red Bulls’ schedule. After battling Western Conference cellar dwellers Chivas USA on the road this Sunday, New York hosts D.C. United, the last-place team in the Eastern Conference, on Aug. 31.
What do you think about Olave’s injury? Concerned over how his loss will impact the team defensively? Confident that Sekagya can fill in for him and get the job done?
Share your thoughts below.