New York Red Bulls: Player Ratings Against Houston Dynamo

All hands on deck again as the shorthanded NY Red Bulls managed to gut out a 1-0 victory over the Houston Dynamo on Wednesday night.The Red Bulls gained a tenuous lead seven minutes in as Kenny Cooper scored an ugly goal chasing down a Cory Ashe back pass, which Houston Goalkeeper Tally Hall cleared into the big striker, causing the ball to bounce into the back of the net.From then on, Houston looked the more likely to score, particularly down the final stretch of the game. Brad Davis will be kicking himself after missing three golden opportunities to level the score, but ultimately, Houston couldn't find the final ball. This is the Red Bulls' third straight 1-0 victory and their second straight with without injured Thierry Henry. Player RatingsGK Ryan MearaAnother solid performance from the rookie keeper, which was capped off by an impressive 93rd-minute save to seal the Red Bulls win. He did show a lack of concentration, failing to catch a 57th-minute cross, but fortunately, the Dynamo were unable to pounce on the mistake.Player Rating: 6.5 RB Brandon BarklagePlayed another solid game. Defended the back post brilliantly clearing away cross after cross. Found Juan Agudelo with a great cross late ...
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New York Red Bulls: Player Ratings Against the L.A. Galaxy

The Red Bulls put in a gutsy performance in earning a 1-0 victory in Los Angeles. Considering the Red Bulls were playing three emergency players on their back line, an inexperience keeper and were missing their two designated players (Henry, injury; Marquez, suspension), the win was a surprise.Yet they defended well and took advantage when their chance fell to them. But to be honest, there weren't a lot of chances in this game.The Galaxy look like a shadow of the 2011 MLS Cup championship team. Part of that can be blamed on the absence of Omar Gonzalez, who is out with a knee injury. But that doesn't explain the lack of flair going forward.Still, the Red Bulls' Chad Barrett will be kicking himself for missing a few good chances. And without the steadiness of teammate Ryan Meara, the game could have been very different.Player Ratings (on a 10-point scale)GK Ryan MearaA spectacular performance from the Red Bulls keeper as he seemed to claim all crosses into his box. His performance took the pressure off his back line, allowing them to exceed expectations. He had a few key saves late in the game, but his 82nd-minute save on a long range ...
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New York Red Bulls: Player Ratings Against DC United

In what was a poor performance all around, the Red Bulls fell 4-1 to DC United at RFK Stadium Sunday afternoon.The Red Bulls' defensive vulnerabilities finally caught up to them, as DC took advantage of numerous defensive lapses and the goals from Thierry Henry and Kenny Cooper largely dried up.It is becoming increasingly obvious that the Red Bulls are missing Wilman Conde, Roy Miller and even the suspended Rafa Marquez, as the short-handed squad was was ripped apart by a surging DC squad.Debutantes Connor Lade and Victor Palsson had nightmare performances, but it will be Stephen Keel who will be singled out for his poor performance that allowed DC to build its 3-0 halftime advantage. Player RatingsGK Ryan MearaMeara will look responsible for the bad score line, but truth is it could have been worse. Had some big saves late to deny DC United two goals, showing his shot-stopping ability. The 21-year-old could do nothing about the four goals proving it's the New York defense, not keeper.Player Rating: 7 RB Jan Gunnar SolliWas part of a right side that was the only bright spot of the Red Bulls attack for most of the match. Solli had a few good crosses including one ...
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New York Red Bulls: Player Ratings Against San Jose

Better late than never for my player ratings, as the Red Bulls hosted San Jose in one of the most controversial games of the season. The first half had a little bit of everything — except defense — as both teams snatched two goals apiece.Undoubtedly, everyone will be left talking about Rafa Marquez's tackle and kick of Shea Salinas in the 42nd minute that broke Salinas' collarbone. The second half was poorly played, to say the least, as neither team found any continuity in the attack, leaving a 2-2 scoreline a fair reflection of the match.Player RatingsGK Ryan MearaCould do nothing about the two San Jose goals as his defense let him down. Made a terrific save in the 55th minute to deny San Jose the go-ahead goal. He was confident and sure-handed throughout the match.Player Rating: 7 RB Jan Gunnar SolliDid not defend well enough on both San Jose goals, although he will not bear the bulk of the blame. Didn't offer much going forward and his passing was very poor.Player Rating: 4 CB Stephen KeelI've had my doubts about Stephen, but he was outstanding in this game. Defended extremely well with a few blocks and crucial interceptions. Did his part ...
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New York Red Bulls: Player Ratings Against Columbus

Red Bulls strikers Thierry Henry and Kenny Cooper both scored a brace, the second time that has happened already this season, as the Red Bulls routed Columbus 4-1 at Columbus Crew Stadium. Cooper scored a quick-fire double in the 8th and 13th minute and from then on the game was never in doubt. Henry added his first goal towards the end of the first half and again in the waning minutes of the second half.Columbus really struggled to maintain possession and move the ball into the attacking third. In the few moments when the crew managed to create chances their finishing was terrible, the highlight coming in the 63rd minute when Emilio Renteria missed an opportunity from just outside the 6 yard box. Columbus did add a 89th minute Chad Marshall goal off a corner kick, but it was too little too late for the lethargic Crew. Player Ratings GK Ryan MearaPoor communication almost cost the young keeper early on, but he got better as the game progressed. Had a number of great saves towards the end of the second half as his defense seemed to lose focus. Deserved a clean sheet for his second half effort, but was denied by an ...
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New York Red Bulls: Player Ratings Against Montreal

The Red Bulls put in a strong offensive display Saturday afternoon to beat the MLS's newest team 5-2 at Red Bull Arena. The Red Bulls were perhaps fortunate to enter the locker room at halftime even at 2-2, but they really stepped up in the second half, scoring three goals including a wonderfully worked goal finished off by Medhi Ballouchy in the the 72nd minute.Thierry Henry notched his first MLS hat trick, leaving a helpless Montreal searching for answers as they continue their search for their first MLS victory. Player RatingsGK Ryan MearaCould have done better on Montreal's two goals and almost allowed a third goal after spilling a first half cross. Wasn't called on much in the second half, but did have a strong save to deny Justin Mapp a second goal.Player Rating: 5 RB Jan Gunnar SolliDid well setting up Medhi Ballouchy's 72nd minute goal and found Ballouchy minutes later on a ball headed just wide. Defended well, but he will take a fair amount of blame for Justin Mapp's 38th minute goal, allowing the midfielder to switch onto his favored left foot. Player Rating: 6 CB Markus HolgerssonWill take blame for both goals, particularly the first where he failed to clear ...
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Red Bulls New York: Draw to FC Dallas Highlights Major Flaws in Team Management

Another day another disappointing draw for the New York Red Bulls. It seems like a familiar script that Hans Backe and Company can’t escape. On paper this team is not just a winner, but a force to be reckoned with. Yet they find themselves in second place in the Eastern Conference, which is mostly due to having played 3-4 more games then most Eastern Conference teams. Today’s draw highlighted the huge mistakes management has made with this team, so here’s a quick analysis of the mistakes that have spoiled a promising season. Tactical Deficiency The problem the Red Bulls are facing seems very reminiscent of two early defeats Everton encountered early last season in the Premier League against Blackburn and Aston Villa. In those two games, Everton held more than two-thirds of the possession, but lost 1-0 twice. In those two games Everton took 43 shots, but only managed to place 9 of them on frame. Blackburn and Aston Villa took only 22 shots combined in the two games, but put 7 of them on target including the 2 shots that found the back of the net. The moral of the story is that possession means nothing if you do ...
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MLS New York Red Bulls Sign Veteran Frank Rost, Solve Goalkeeper Problem

The New York Red Bulls have announced the signing of Bundesliga veteran Frank Rost, who has made 426 combined appearances with Werder Bremen, Shalke 04 and Hamburger SV. Rost is also the German record holder for the most appearances in the UEFA Cup—now referred to as the UEFA Europa League—which serves as the second-most prestigious European club competition.Having agreed to a designated player contract, Rost will become the first ever goalkeeper to be a designated player. This move ends speculation of a big New York deal, after Canadian international Dwayne DeRosario was sent to DC United largely for salary cap reasons.Rost will replace the struggling tandem of Bouna Coundoul and Gregg Sutton, who have both made serious errors between the sticks for the Red Bulls this season. Coundoul, known for his athletic saves and questionable decision making, was the starting keeper for most of last season. But he was soon replaced by the more sure-handed Sutton. Still, even Sutton has struggled this season, particularly on the recent West Coast road trip.Rost is sure to be a boost to the club, which seems to be struggling to find a good run of form despite their share of the Eastern Conference lead. In recent weeks, the ...
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