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The Good, The Bad, The Red, The Dead

Posted on 04 August 2010 by dkarell

This past week, with the spotlight on Texas, the Red Bull’s players put on a show. In the 2010 MLS All Star Game last Wednesday, Juan Pablo Angel had a solid 45 minutes in the first half before being substituted, and Thierry Henry made his MLS debut last Saturday in the match against the Houston Dynamo. In this 13th edition of the column, we will focus on the 2-2 draw with Houston, as well as the recent signing of Rafael Marquez.

The Good: With Thierry Henry and Juan Pablo Angel finally together, the Red Bull’s attack was more dangerous than seen in quite some time. Henry assisted on both of Angel’s goals, and should have had two of his own, though his finishing was off all day. Expect to see plenty of goals with these two playing as strikers and providers for each other and their teammates. Also, the Red Bulls signed an unprecedented third designated player, Mexico captain Rafa Marquez, to a three and a half year contract, through the 2013 season. Marquez will shore up any potential chinks in the back line, and will most likely be played by coach Hans Backe in a defensive midfield role.

The Bad: Despite being up a man for the whole second half of the match against Houston, the Red Bulls were unable to hold their lead, or add to it. Juan Pablo Angel’s goal was a fantastic strike, but after that, despite close chances, the Red Bulls were unable to put any away, and they missed out on picking up more points on the Eastern Conference leading Columbus Crew, who lost over the weekend to Chivas USA. The Red Bulls are currently in second place, down seven points from the Crew, with a game in hand.

The Red: Before I wrote this article, I was going to say that the backline, and defensive focus was a big issue recently, but I think that Rafa Marquez will help shore that up. His leadership should help raise the games of his teammates, and hopefully he will provide the squad with plenty of possession. Hopefully this is also the end of the Carl Robinson experiment. He has been oft injured, and when playing, not looking very good on offense or defense. He is usually invisible during matches.

The Dead: Clint Mathis today announced his retirement today, saying that this weekend’s game between his Los Angeles Galaxy and Real Madrid will be his final match. Mathis was one of the first American super star soccer players, and his career in New York was nothing short of superb. Mathis played five seasons with the Metrostars/Red Bulls, finishing with 45 goals in all competitions, including five in one game against the Dallas Burn in 2000. The Red Bulls have announced they plan to make a tribute to his career.

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Say goodbye to Clint Mathis

Posted on 19 November 2007 by ASN Staff

The New York Red Bulls have traded Clint Mathis to the L.A. Galaxy in exchange for a third round pick in the 2008 SuperDraft. According to RB Technical Director Jeff Agoos, “this was a very difficult decision but I would like to thank Clint for his work this year and wish him the best of luck in the future.” That’s from an official statement by the team.

This is a shame, as Cletus was a fan favorite and early this year appeared to show glimpses of his former self. But he was barely used during the stretch run of the season–perhaps due to a falling out with Bruce Arena, as has been rumored (he’d hardly be the only one to have feuded with Arena this season. Depending on whom you believe, it might be easier to find the players that didn’t feud with the former USMNT coach).

I’m not sure who the Red Bulls might get with the third round pick, but new blood is definitely needed. And let’s face it: Clint is no longer a spring chicken. Dude turns 31 in a few days, which for an offensive midfielder/forward is pretty old–especially one who wasn’t exactly a fitness nut in the early stages of his career. (This is the same guy who allegedly said “I just don’t like the taste of water,” in response to questions over his beer intake. Though I have not been able to find that quote anywhere. If anybody can point me to a definite reference I would be very grateful).

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Mathis starting tonight for RBNY

Posted on 04 October 2007 by ASN Staff

Clint Mathis is in the starting lineup in place of the injured Claudio Reyna, as first reported by Ives. That Ives really is something. Give the man props. Reyna is currently leading the referendum on least important Red Bull player of 2007 but there’s still time to vote. I personally am not as much a Reyna hater as many others, but I do prefer Mathis (though Claudio has played well recently. Well that is, judging by his form in the first 20 games of the season. The ones he was fit for). Unfortunately, Chris Leitch is also in the lineup, which all but guarantees Red Bull will be scored upon at some point. Sadly, I will not be able to watch the game as I am deadline at my real job. I’ll check back later though.

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