By IVES GALARCEP
The list of missing starters read like a who’s-who for the New York Red Bulls. Thierry Henry, Tim Cahill, Jamison Olave and Dax McCarty. None of them were in the starting lineup for Saturday’s clash with the Montreal Impact, and their collective absences made the Red Bulls an underdog against a winless Impact side.
Rather than roll over in Canada, the Red Bulls’ reserve-laden squad gave the Impact all they could handle, battling back from an early 1-0 deficit to take a 2-1 lead. Montreal playmaker Felipe Martins kept the Red Bulls from taking all three points though, as his second-half goal helped the Impact salvage a 2-2 tie.
Jonny Steele scored a goal and set up a Peguy Luyindula goal in the space of three minutes in the first half to give the Red Bulls the lead, but Martins headed home a Justin Mapp cross in the 59th minute for the final goal of the match.
Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles made a handful of top-shelf saves to help preserve the point for the Red Bulls, who were without injured star Cahill, and Henry and Olave, who were both left home to avoid having them play on artificial turf for fear of having them pick up injuries.
The Impact looked like they would blow the game open when Martins set up Andres Romero with a perfect pass that Romero tucked past Robles in the fifth minute to make the score 1-0.
Montreal kept attacking in waves, with Marco DiVaio coming close to adding a second, but Robles made a handful of early saves to keep the Red Bulls close.
The Red Bulls rallied in the 31st minute when Sam sent a perfect cross from the right flank to a streaking Steele, who finished perfectly to tie the match. Steele made it 2-1 just three minutes later when he sprung Luyindula with an inch-perfect pass after a Marco DiVaio turnover.
The Red Bulls had a chance to make the score 3-1, but Luyindula fired a penalty kick off the post and out to keep the Impact within striking distance.
The Impact tied things up with Martins’ header in the 59th minute to earn their second consecutive draw, while the Red Bulls also remained winless, with a third consecutive draw.
Considering they were without Henry, Cahill, Olave and Dax didn’t start, I think a draw is an acceptable result although the match was certainly winnable. The home draws against Colorado and Chivas were the bad results. If RBNY wins those, they’re off to a pretty good start.
I don’t think the criticisms of the team’s performance yesterday are all that valid because of the guys who were missing from the lineup.
With everyone coming back next week for the game against DC “worst team in MLS history” United, 3 points should be the expectation.
The team does not look strong….we have not signed enough compared to the other teams…montreal is not one of the best teams this season and yet they looked like all stars for a good portion of the match…i hat to see who we are going to send out on the field for CCL….shame on management to not build a better team…..
Waste and poor display. The team looks disjointed – defense let waive after waive of attacks parade against goal and most of that cam right down the middle of the park….on offense – so many thru balls so little results; everything from selfish play to too many touches…..and frankly, this is professional football – they are expected to finish their chances; love the guy but growing tired of his misses (Luyindula)….and totally agree with the comment below to play to a consistent brand of football – Sam played extremely well and finally provided the options needed …..satisfaction with an away point is ridiculous; winners are never satisfied with that….finally, man up – if everyone else in the league can play on turf, our guys need to also….lets stop with the silliness
Robles and Sekagya were incredible this evening. The Red Bulls need a starting right back. Sam and Steele were strongest offensively. Need to determine who will take PKs from this point forward.
Yab, RB is posición to find hopefully. Unfortunately, there’s nothing to trad besides Alexander. If Eckersley doesn’t find a place he wont be back by next year anyways because most of his salary that wont be paid any more by Toronto.
Throwing away another very winnable game. Petke really needs to settle on a philosophy, I feel like our fundamentals change from match to match. Seems like we play better as the attacking side regardless of venue, why not attack more? We dominated once we turned it on, then gave up the equalizer once we came out of half trying to sit back and defend.
For RBNY, the best defense is a good offense.
Poor Luyindula. Just when you think he has remembered how to score goals, he clanks a PK off the post.
Did the defense not read the memo about Montreal liking to beat a high line and play through-balls? It would also be nice if they looked like they actually communicated with each other.
This guy is way underrated! He’s been incredible since last year.