The New York Red Bulls 2020 season can be drawn up to a year of transition.
It featured a switch at Head Coach, major roster turnover, the emergence of a promising teenage prospect, and concluded with a loss to eventual MLS Cup Champions Columbus Crew in the first round of the playoffs.
The Red Bulls scored 29 goals by 12 different players in 2020, here are SBI’s top five.
5. Daniel Royer vs Montreal Impact, September 27th
Forward Daniel Royer is no stranger to a blast from outside the box, putting one past Clément Diop and the Montreal Impact.
With his back to goal, Royer took on a pass from Kaku, turning and meeting the ball after a great touch. The move gave Royer space to take an additional touch and fire his shot before Impact defender Luis Binks could make a challenge.
The Austrian’s fourth and final goal of the season was a rocket and helped the Red Bulls trounce Thiery Henry’s Impact.
The turn. The shot. 😱
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) September 28, 2020
4. Florian Valot vs. Orlando City, October 3rd
The return of Florian Valot, who missed the previous two seasons due to injury, brought needed energy to the Red Bulls starting XI. The Frenchman’s willingness to press high helped force turnovers and create scoring opportunities, Orlando City learned that lesson in October.
After winning the ball, Valot quickly sent the ball over to Daniel Royer before he could get dispossessed. The pass was too high to do much with, leaving Royer no option to let the ball just hit him. The forward moved in a way that let the ball fall into the path of Valot, who scored through the legs of Pedro Gallese.
Using your teammate as a rebounder is a unique way to score however intentional it may have been.
— New York Red Bulls (@NewYorkRedBulls) October 3, 2020
3. Caden Clark vs Atlanta United, October 10
Seventeen year-old Caden Clark marked his MLS debut with a beautiful volley, opening his goal-scoring account and earning the Red Bulls three points in Atlanta.
Clark stood unmarked at the top of the box while Sean Davis whipped in a corner. The clearance landed ideally for Clark, who met the ball with a perfect volley past Brad Guzan.
The goal and the emergence of Caden Clark proved to be one of the brighter moments of the 2020 Red Bulls season.
THE KID CADEN CLARK!
— New York Red Bulls (@NewYorkRedBulls) October 10, 2020
2. Tom Barlow vs Montreal Impact, September 27th
Another cheeky touch courtesy of Daniel Royer has made its way on to this list, assisting Tom Barlow against the Montreal Impact in late September.
Unable to get his head on a cross, Royer set himself up for a cross when the ball landed at the feet of Cristian Cásseres Jr. The midfielder found space to send the ball back into the crowded penalty area, which was redirected by Royer’s no-look backheel and finished off by Barlow.
The back-heel flick from Daniel Royer! 👀
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) September 27, 2020
1. Caden Clark vs Toronto FC, October 14th
Caden Clark wasted no time following up his headline-grabbing debut goal, scoring an even better one the following week against Toronto FC.
The Minnesota native received the ball from Marc Rzatkowski and was fearless in his pursuit of the goal. Clark shrugged off a tackle before firing an absolute rocket with his left foot. With little space, the midfielder was able to get enough power on the shot to beat Quentin Westberg from beyond the box and earn the Red Bulls a 1-1 draw.
Clark’s strike is the best of all of New York’s goals in the 2020 season and it is a safe bet Daniel Royer agrees.
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) October 15, 2020