It is the end of an era for the New York Red Bulls.
Luis Robles and Bradley Wright-Phillips have played their last games for the Red Bulls, who announced on Thursday afternoon their decision to part ways with the two club legends. Robles had his option for 2020 declined while Wright-Phillips is out of contract and not being brought back.
Robles, the team captain, had been with the Red Bulls since 2012. The 35-year-old goalkeeper helped the club win the 2013 Supporters’ Shield, its first significant piece of silverware, and two more of those trophies after that. He has Major League Soccer’s Ironman streak with 183 consecutive complete games and earned MLS Goalkeeper of the Year honors in 2015.
Robles is now eligible for MLS free agency.
“The entire organization would like to thank Luis for his contributions to the club over the last eight seasons,” said Sporting Director Denis Hamlett in a statement. “During his tenure, Luis was an important part of the team and the organization, leading our efforts on and off the field. Luis’ play and work ethic speak for themselves when you look at the individual and team success during his time. These decisions are never easy and we wish Luis and his family the best in the next stage of his career.”
The 34-year-old Wright-Phillips, who was hindered by injuries this year, leaves the club he joined in 2013. The talismanic striker ends his time with the Red Bulls with three Supporters’ Shields, two MLS Golden Boots, a pair of MLS Best XI nods, and 126 goals.
“Brad will go down as one of the best forwards in MLS history, and certainly a major part of the success of this club since he arrived in 2013,” added Hamlett in the statement. “Brad had an incredible run with this club and will be remembered here as a great player, teammate, and person, and we thank him for all that he has accomplished and helped the club accomplish. This is another decision we do not take lightly and we wish Brad and his family all the best.”
The Red Bulls announced additional moves on Thursday, declining the options of midfielders Vincent Bezecourt, Marcus Epps, Derrick Etienne Jr. and Jean-Christophe Koffi, and goalkeeper Evan Louro.
Additionally, on-loan midfielder Josh Sims has returned to Southampton.
& you have to think that Long will finally make a move to Europe & who knows if Kaku will stay? They have some major holes to fill. Hopefully they will be active in transfer market, but not holding my breath
No return for Sims hurts too, they will frustratingly promote a few USL guys and say “good enough!”
Bummed personally about no more Robles and BWP, but considering their age, totally fine with this. Time to give Ryan Meara the keys (he was GREAT in that year he played like five years ago or so). But I’m more surprised about letting Derrick Etienne go. Granted, still very rough and didn’t have a great final ball, but stretched the field and made things happen. Plus a former homegrown player so a lot was invested in him.
If they don’t already have plans, someone has to want them.