LAUDERHILL, Fla. — Matt Miazga had a breakout year with the New York Red Bulls in 2015. Whether he returns to the club to try and build on that is yet to be determined.
The Red Bulls are focusing on trying to bring back the core of their Supporters’ Shield-winning team from a season ago, but it is unclear right now whether Miazga, their young starting centerback, will be back for the 2016 campaign. Miazga, 20, is attracting interest from oversees, and the Red Bulls are having to weigh whether they should sell him or not given that he is entering the final year of his contract with them.
A recent report from Goal USA stated that Miazga and his representation are keen on having him bolt for Europe. That has left the Red Bulls in a predicament, as they have to consider selling him now to get something in return with risking losing him for free.
“Matt is still up in the air a little bit,” Red Bulls head coach Jesse Marsch told SBI on Day 1 of the 2016 MLS Combine on Friday. “He’s surveying a lot of things, we’re trying to find ways to keep him here. We also want to be very supportive of him and not put too much pressure on him to make any big decisions right now.
“I think every day is a little bit of a feeling out process in terms of what’s available for him, what the opportunities are here, how to challenge him to continue to think about the fact that being here is a big part of his development.”
Miazga was nothing short of a revelation last year. He started 24 of the 26 regular-season games he played in for the the Red Bulls, and helped them capture their second Supporters’ Shield title in three years. His impressive performances for club and country also saw him promoted from the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team to the U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team to the senior U.S. Men’s National Team all in a matter of months.
Now, he is contemplating a big career decision. Does he move to Europe to take on the next challenge in 2016 or stay at home with the Red Bulls, where playing time is more of a sure thing?
Marsch and the Red Bulls are hoping for the latter.
“What’s important for Matt is to understand that there may be certain things that he thinks he wants or needs, but there’s also realities that we have to face,” said Marsch, “and trying to find a way for everyone to move forward and benefit from each other no matter how long he’s here or what the situation is. I think Matt understands that, and he’s in mature in his approach in that.”