Tag Archive | "Richie Williams"

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The Good, the Bad, the Red, the Dead

Posted on 05 April 2010 by ASN Staff

ASN’s newest feature constitutes a critical look back at the last New York Red Bulls match. In this case: Saturday’s 1-0 win at Seattle Sounders FC.

A quick explanation of terms:
The Good – Should speak for itself. Players, formations, strategies, substitutions and other things that “looked good” for whatever reason (but not aesthetically. We don’t care about players’ hairstyles and the like).

The Bad – Opposite of good. Who and what looked lousy and why.

The Red – Things that have us concerned. Primarily individual play but could also be strategies, (lack of) substitutions and putting players at positions they have no business occupying (though that practice thankfully appears done with the departure of Juan Carlos Osorio).

The Dead – Players, schemes or strategies that deserve to be put out to pasture.

Ready? Here we go!

The good, the dead, the red, the dead: Week 2

The Good:

Kandji got the game-winner and did well Saturday ©Scott Marsh/ASN

Believe it or not, the team’s attack. Passing was crisper, runs were better and set pieces were a lot more elaborate. You could tell this had been the focus of the previous week’s practices. The Red Bulls dominated the first 20 minutes of play and Macoumba Kandji’s goal was the just reward. Speaking of Mac, he looked much more comfortable than he did against Chicago. As much as we all want him to be a traditional striker, perhaps Kandji’s best role is as a withdrawn forward.

Roy Miller had a strong game, particularly in the second half when he shut his part of the field down.

Sinisa Ubiparipovic also played well, some early jitters notwithstanding.

The bad:
The defense and goalkeeping. Yes, we are picking on this even though the team “pitched a shutout” as it were. The marking was pretty weak and the defense seemed disorganized. Sounders players had way too much space and were at times completely unmarked (see Ljungberg, Freddie late in the second half). The passing in the defensive third was not always precise either.

Also what’s with the new coaching staff not using all their subs? Especially in close games? Isn’t that just asking for trouble? Richie Williams should have gone to his bench far, far earlier on Saturday.

The red
Bouna Condoul’s play away from his line is going to give some Red Bulls fan a heart attack before too long.

Juan Pablo Angel. Second game in a row he has been almost completely absent (other than to complain about bad or insufficient service). Are we witnessing the twilight of his career?

Jeremy Hall at right back is begging to get exploited by a smart coach or skilled left wing.

Hans Backe’s health. Or should we say “health”? Call us paranoid, but it simply doesn’t make much sense for a head coach to miss a game for an upset stomach. Either his health is worse than the team is letting on, or Backe is entertaining offers to join his old boss Sven-Goran Eriksson on the Ivory Coast national team.

Overconfidence by fans, players and press. Obviously ASN does not fall in this category (if anything we’re overly negative. It’s a dirty job but somebody needs to do it). But already message boards are aflutter with talk of playoffs and conference championships. Unfortunately, the situation in March-April 2010 is only slightly different from where the team found itself in November 2008, when a strong showing at Houston and lucky win at Real Salt Lake gave it an unexpected berth in the MLS Cup final. We’re not saying a 2009-type meltdown is in store (the home advantage provided by Red Bull Arena alone will simply not allow it) just that we should all take the advice of Harvey Keitel’s character in Pulp Fiction: to not get ahead of ourselves (that’s a paraphrase).

The dead
It may be a bit premature considering it’s just the second game of the season, but Dane Richards really doesn’t seem to have the skills or wherewithal to play in MLS. Actually, scratch that; it’s not premature. This is Richards’ fourth season, which constitutes more chances than anybody else gets in a lifetime. R.I.P. Dane. Yeah he’ll pull something out of his hat on choice occasions (as he did vs. Santos or in the 2008 postseason) but those moments are too few and too far between. With a $200K-plus salary he needs to be a faster learner. Cut him loose and use the cash on somebody else.

Jens Lehmann to RBNY rumors. Please end them once and for all. Even though this team could use another keeper (or two?) a 40-year old German has-been with anger control issues (or something) is not the answer, even for part of a season. There is an abundance of U.S. talent at the goalkeeper position. Bring some of those guys in and give them a chance if they show promise with the “reserves” (quotation marks due to the fact that they do not officially exist, at least not yet).

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A road win! Bulls shut out Sounders, 1-0

Posted on 04 April 2010 by Nathaniel E. Baker

Macoumba Kandji ©Scott Marsh/ASN

So far in 2010 the New York Red Bulls have raised the curtain on their new ground, laid to rest a “curse” that haunted the team for close to two years, won their first two games while not surrendering a goal in the process. Suffice it to say the Red Bull Arena era is off to a flying start. Tonight in Seattle, the team got an early goal from Macoumba Kandji and held on through some hair-raising moments to survive with a 1-0 win, just as they did against Chicago in the season opener.

Joel Lindpere discussed the game with reporters shortly after the final whistle. Give it a listen.

Other than that, there were numerous differences between tonight’s win at Qwest Field and last week’s at Red Bull Arena. Where the team’s defense impressed against Chicago, it was the Red Bulls’ attacking game that stood out against Seattle. Conversely, while its offense was almost completely stagnant in the season opener, its defense (and goalkeeping) was caught flat footed on more than just a few occasions in Week Two. Even the team’s coach was different: Richie Williams took the reins from Hans Backe, who watched from the hotel on doctor’s orders. The Swedish coach is expected to be back in charge next week at Chivas USA.

Tonight, New York got lucky. How many times will you see Freddie Ljungberg miss a header from point blank range, the way he did in the second half? How many mishandled crosses can Bouna Condoul get away with before the ball ends up in the back of his net?

For now, the team and its fans will gladly take the six points from two games. And winning at Seattle is particularly enjoyable after the season-opening meltdown one year ago. Then it was “Same ol’ Metro.” Now? Something more like “who are these guys?” And “break out the Red Bulls!”

Much more to follow, as we weave in reportage and photos from the ASN crew in Seattle. For now, here are the New York Red Bulls player ratings. Be sure to supply a grade and back up your assessment in the comment area at the bottom of the page.

Player Ratings

From 1-0 with 10 being highest:

Condoul – 5
Some stellar saves in the second half but man, this guy is a total liability on crosses. Very nearly cost the team several times.

Hall – 6
Several mistakes in the early going. Was beaten by his man a number of times in the first half as well. Did better in the second, even launching a few forays into the Sounders half.

Petke – 6
Caught out of position several times but there were several others where he was positioned perfectly. Still, the Sounders had way too many chances to warrant a higher grade at this point.

Ream – 6.5
Like Hall, he made a jittery start with a number of turnovers. Recovered and had some nice long balls to the forwards but eek, this was hairy.

Miller – 7
Spotted just one mistake in the first half, when an errant pass led to a Sounders chance. Was a rock in the second, however. Dispossessed Ljungberg a few times in the attacking third and locked down his part of the field, where the action was hotter in the late stages of the game.

Richards – 5
Better than the Chicago game, but not much. Did play a few nice balls into space in the early stages of the match, but most attacks still ended with him putting his head down and going nowhere. And how about that miss late in the game? This is the second time in as many games he was involved with what should have been the insurance goal. Against Chicago he teed off from a tight angle instead of slotting the ball to Angel. Here he blasted a perfect sitter (great service from Borman via Kandji by the way) over the bar.

Stammler – 6
Solid, not spectacular, which is what the holding midfielder is supposed to be. Turned the ball over a few too many times for my liking and was a bit quiet. But it’s his first game back. Something to build on.

Lindpere – 7
Did his part launching attacks in the first half. In the second his role was obviously more defensive, which makes sense with a 1-0 lead. And he did that well also. A stabilizing influence on the team overall.

Ubiparipovic – 6.5
Did well in the later stages of the game but was too sloppy in the first half to deserve a better grade. Still, a very high workrate on the left wing. Perhaps too high? Maybe his energy could be used more efficiently?

Angel – 5
Another disappointing performance. Complained a lot about bad, or nonexistent service, but did nothing with the chances that were provided (mainly from Kandji). Still doesn’t seem completely comfortable in the offense and not sure if tracking back the way he does is working. Also appears tentative, presumably due to injury. Don’t think it would have hurt to sit him for this game. As it turns out it didn’t hurt to start him either.

Kandji – 8
If I didn’t know better I’d almost think he read and took to heart last week’s rating, when I wrote “Mac needs to lighten up on the stepovers and backheels and go back to fundamentals. Make runs, move the ball…” He did exactly that and the result was an entirely different attacking game for the Red Bulls. Scoring the winning goal was nice enough; he did well to find a spot and then position his body to deposit the ball in the roof of the net when it bounced his way. Better still were some of his passes, particularly in the second half; the one to Borman should have resulted in the second goal but went wanting (see Richards, Dane). Kandji just seems more comfortable in a withdrawn forward role, hopefully he’ll see more opportunities in this position.

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Match Facts

New York Red Bulls 1, Seattle Sounders FC 0
April 3, 2010 –Qwest Field; Seattle, WA
Attendance: 36,066

Scoring Summary:
NY: Kandji 1 (unassisted) 21’

Disciplinary Summary:
SEA: Ljungberg (caution) 10’
NY: Petke (caution) 35’
NY: Kandji (caution) 62’
SEA: Riley (caution) 63’

New York Red Bulls (2-0-0) – Bouna Coundoul (GK), Roy Miller, Tim Ream, Mike Petke, Jeremy Hall, Sinisa Ubiparipovic (Danleigh Borman 79’), Joel Lindpere, Seth Stammler, Dane Richards, Macoumba Kandji (Conor Chinn 89’), Juan Pablo Angel

Substitutes Not Used: Greg Sutton, Andrew Boyens, Austin da Luz, Juan Agudelo, Tony Tchani

Seattle Sounders FC (1-1-0) – Kasey Keller, Leo Gonzalez (David Estrada, 83′), Tyrone Marshall, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, James Riley, Steve Zakuani (Sanna Nyassi 76’), Osvaldo Alonso, Brad Evans, Roger Levesque (Pat Noonan 56’), Freddie Ljungberg, Fredy Montero

Substitutes Not Used: Terry Boss, Patrick Ianni, Zach Scott, Nathan Sturgis

Referee: Kevin Stott
Referee’s Assistants: Darren Clark, Hector Vergara
4th Referee: Tyler Ploeger

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Photo gallery: RBNY 3, Army 1

Posted on 30 March 2010 by ASN Staff

ASN photographer Scott Marsh was at the New York Red Bulls exhibition match at Army on March 29. The Red Bulls won 3-1 on goals from Juan Agudelo (2x) and Conor Chinn. Red Bulls Reader has a proper recap of the match along with video highlights.

Trialist Damani Ralph also saw substantial time in the match and assisted on Agudelo’s winning goal. A previous version of this post was unable to identify the 20-year old Jamaican, who last played for Russian champions Rubin Kazan. Ralph was the 2003 MLS rookie of the year after being drafted in the first round out of the University of Connecticut by the Chicago Fire. He has been capped 18 times by the Jamaican national team.

A few of our favorite photos follow, complete with snarky commentary (by ASN). Even more of these photos are on our Facebook page.

All photos ©Scott Marsh / ASN

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Five for '10: RBNY New Year's resolutions

Posted on 31 December 2009 by Nathaniel E. Baker

The 2009 season was by allany account the worst season in the history of New York’s Major League Soccer franchise. It was a year with many lowlights, none of which are worth reliving at this point (the masochists among you can consult ASN’s midseason review piece if you really want to go there). Suffice it to say 2009 was bad. But 2009 is over. And 2010 brings hope. Well, sort of.

In a cruel twist of irony for New York fans, MLS may pull the ultimate harakiri act just when its biggest market is finally poised to live up to this billing. Red Bull Arena, now built, stands to become the jewel of U.S. soccer specific stadia. Just by opening its doors and hosting a competitive soccer match, the stadium is sure to generate more hype and publicity than the organization has been able to muster in the last 15 years combined. Therein lies the first problem however. And also, the first new year’s resolution. The others follow, in order of importance. Here goes:

1. Red Bull AG, Red Bull New York and whatever corporate/organizational entities are associated with the Austrian energy drink company must do everything in their power to prevent an MLS work stoppage. According to at least one report, Red Bull is one of the teams pushing for changes to the collective bargaining agreement, primarily to permit an additional designated player slot. If true, this is a highly curious move from an organization that already has two DP slots and which, for whatever reason, has not been able to fill its second since the retirement of Claudio Reyna in 2008. (And frankly, the team didn’t exactly get its money worth with Reyna either). The current CBA is not perfect, in fact it leaves a lot to be desired. But with the new stadium, the Red Bulls can be a raging success despite of the CBA’s limitations. Red Bull should be doing everything in its power to work out a compromise, not push for concessions from the other owners.

2. Hire Richie Williams as head coach. This move is long overdue. Anybody who knows anything about Williams, about MLS and about the team say he’s the right man for the job. Get it done. Get it done now.

3. Draft players you know. Obviously the players you know best are the ones your organization developed. It’s not worth naming names at this point because we all know about Dilly Duka. Rather select a player you might not use anyway (see Brunner, Eric) please go with a known commodity. Yes it sucks that you have to waste a draft pick on somebody from your own youth system, but the draft is a crapshoot anyway. This is even more of a no-brainer now that it was revealed that Duka wants to sign for the Red Bulls anyway.

4. Use your second DP slot to sign a U.S. national with a realistic chance of making the World Cup roster. The reasons are obvious: you want somebody local fans, who hitherto have only paid attention to the U.S. national team, can connect with. You also want to be able to piggyback on all the publicity the World Cup is sure to generate. There are several options for this: One just had his loan deal with Belenenses terminated, for example. Whatever your feelings on Freddy Adu, there is no denying he is a recognized name that would generate buzz. He’s also still young (we think) and has plenty of upside. As a natural left-footer Adu can be a game-changer, particularly in MLS. He may even come cheap.

5. Do a better job reaching out to local media and bloggers. As an admittedly fledgling outfit, ASN was not surprised to see the team’s media relations department all but ignore us. Except then we heard identical stories from journalists with actual cachet. We aren’t asking for special (or indeed any) favors ourselves. But there are other media that can do a lot to generate buzz for the franchise and by all accounts they didn’t even get Christmas cards.

That’s it from us. Have we forgotten anything? Surely RBNY fans can tell us. Or add to the list by posting a comment below. Happy new year!

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Off-season discussion

Posted on 12 November 2009 by ASN Staff

The 2009 season was one to forget. Thankfully, it’s done now. The opening of Red Bull Arena in 2010 all but guarantees next season will be better, probably even by dramatic measures. So what needs to be done this off-season? Lots. A coach needs to be signed (the silence we’re hearing on Richie Williams says a lot about his diminishing chances of being the guy), players need to be jettisoned and new ones signed. There is the matter of the draft to deal with. There is that DP slot. Will Thierry Henry be the guy to fill it? One of his former teammates on the French national team has made his opinions clear on the subject but surely there is more to it than that.

Anyway here’s your chance to discuss these and other matters unencumbered by the BigSoccer moderators (though our spam filters are still ready if you decide to go that route).

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Giants Stadium endgame

Posted on 25 October 2009 by ASN Staff

The New York Red Bulls played their last game at Giants Stadium Saturday night, Oct. 24, 2009, putting to rest 13 years of (mostly bad) memories. They did so in impressive fashion, defeating Toronto FC by a 5-0 score that ended TFC’s playoff hopes.

The massive Swamp was never meant to be anything beyond a temporary waystation for the New York/New Jersey Major League Soccer franchise. Two ownership groups, one “rebranding” and nearly a decade and a half later, the team has finally bid adieu to the Meadowlands stadium.

It wasn’t easy. In a cruel fit of irony, the kickoff was delayed 16 minutes due to inclement weather–driving rain, thunderstorm and lightning. Given everything that has happened to this franchise since 1996, this was perhaps entirely appropriate. A crowd of 21,305 braved the elements anyway.

When the match finally did kick off, they were quickly rewarded. In the second minute of play, a pass by Juan Pablo Angel launched Macoumba Kandji and the lanky forward provided the clinical finish to put the Red Bulls up, 1-0.

New York was the livelier side in the game’s first half hour. And on 33 minutes they were rewarded again for their efforts. Angel and Kandji combined again–this time with Kandji providing the assist–and the score was suddenly 2-0. This despite the fact the Red Bulls had nothing but pride to play for. That had been made clear several weeks ago. A year after the franchise’s first-ever trip to MLS Cup, the New York Red Bulls imploded in 2009, torn asunder by questionable (at best) personnel decisions and a coach who was allowed to hang on to his job far longer than should reasonably allowed.

Toronto, meanwhile, had a very reasonable chance at making the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. They needed to beat the Red Bulls and hope either Colorado or FC Dallas didn’t win their matches at Real Salt Lake and Seattle, respectively.

By the 62nd minute, it was clear this wasn’t going to happen. Juan Pablo Angel one-timed a pass from Jeremy Hall past TFC keeper Brian Edwards to make it 3-0 for the home side. Kandji completed his brace on 70 minutes (unassisted this time) and Matthew Mbuta converted a stoppage time penalty kick for the 5-0 end result.

The victorious Red Bulls in the Giants Stadium tunnel en route to their locker room after the match:

“I thought the team played well,” said interim head coach Richie Williams after the game. “My hat goes off to all the guys out there, they did a great job.”

Williams spoke of the team’s motivation coming into its last game at Giants Stadium–specifically its need to do well. “We have to do that for ourselves, the fans and for the team,” he said. “It’s great to have this as the last game in the stadium and go out with a victory. Hopefully this leads to bigger and better things in the new stadium.”

Asked about his status as interim head coach, Williams said the following (video embedded):

Mike Petke, who returned to the club this year after a lengthy absence, was forced to leave the match early in the first half with an injury. In the following video, he discusses the injury and talks a little bit about his “bittersweet” feelings of leaving Giants Stadium.

Metro legends pay their respects

A trio of MetroStar/Red Bull legends were on hand to pay their respects to the Swamp. You’ve already seen Youri Djorkaeff drop a big hint on Thierry Henry’s future in MLS. Directly below is Tab Ramos (embedded video).

Former U.S. Men’s National Team, MetroStars and Red Bulls goalkeeper Tony Meola was on hand as well:

Tab Ramos was asked about the prospects of coaching the Red Bulls and revealed there have been conversations with the front office:

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Red Bulls win second straight, eye sixth place

Posted on 31 August 2009 by arozsa

Richards got the game winner

After not winning a game since May, the New York Red Bulls have now won two straight after a 1-0 victory over the defending champion Columbus Crew Saturday night at the Meadowlands. Dane Richards scored in his second straight game for the home side as they climbed within five points of an improbable basement escape in the Eastern Conference with six games to play.

It may be too late to matter, but even a modest winning streak is a welcome tonic for a long-suffering franchise toiling through one of the worst non-expansion seasons in leauge history.

“Very happy to get another win,” said Interim Coach Richie Williams. “We haven’t had a whole lot this year so I’m proud of the guys.”

Columbus, still reeling from a 5-0 Champions League meltdown in Mexico midweek, rested key attacking starters Robbie Rogers, Alejandro Moreno and Guillermo Barros Schelotto.

“Jason (Garey) and Lenhart are very good players,” said Crew head coach Robert Warzycha. “They were a little bit fresher than the other guys, that’s why I started them.”

However complementary their manager might have been, all three of the rested starters made late cameos, but were unable to provide the final touch the visitors lacked all night.

The clearly travel worn Crew, along with with the play-out-the-string mentality of the Red Bulls and typical drudgery of the concrete-like surface at Giants Stadium, made for a game that was destined to be mired in midfield. The chances were few and far between in the first half, but as the Crew threw men forward for their numerous set piece opportunities, the space began to open up for New York on the counter attack.

Richards broke out in the 53rd on such a chance, but was unable to find his teammates running the channels and his tame effort from distance was blocked. He made no mistake on a similar circumstance 10 minutes later, after picking up a deflected cross from the Crew’s Frankie Hejduk. With no teammates in support and one man to beat, he side-stepped his defender and slotted past Columbus reserve goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum, who was caught halfway off his line.

“I was just trying to get it under control,” said Richards, who bumped his league tally to three with the goal.

“I waited until he backed up into the box and I took him one-on-one and finished it.”

Hejduk, who was unable to recover on the play after getting tangled up with Juan Pablo Angel, earned a yellow card for protesting what he seemingly felt was a deliberate attempt by Angel to take him out of the play. The Columbus defender declined to speak with reporters after the game.

New York, now seemingly restored in confidence during the most difficult season in recent memory, plays host to the struggling Kansas City Wizards next week. A third straight victory would put the interim Williams’ win tally on par with the departed Juan Carlos Osorio’s total for the season. Additionally, it would give the Red Bulls a fighting chance of finishing the season in something other than last place; something that would surely give weight to Williams’ application for the full-time position.

Despite all the nuances, there was no mistaking the biggest motivating factor.

“I don’t want to be remembered in history for being part of the worst team in the MLS,” said Angel.

Meanwhile, in the land of things that actually matter for this season, the Crew gave up a golden opportunity to move into the pole position for their second straight Supporters’ Shield after Houston and Chicago also lost this weekend. Their brutal September schedule continues next week with a trip to the ultimate nightmare CONCACAF venue, Estadio Saprissa, followed by a weekend league fixture at Chicago.

New York Player Ratings

Coundoul – 5 –
Didn’t have to make any big saves, but made things plenty interesting by repeated flapping at crosses. If Schelotto were given more than 5 minutes to work with, he would have been promptly punished.

Petke – 7 –
Typically well suited to match up against physical forwards, and did not disappoint, rendering Steven Lenhart (the love-child of Bill Laimbeer and Kurt Rambis) ineffective all night.

Boyens – 6 –
Steered clear of the gaffes that had plagued him from time to time, and so he gets a solid rating. Lost track of Jason Garey a few times in the first half, but was fortunate that his finishing was atrocious.

Borman – 5 –
Struggled with Ekpo early on, but tightened up as the game went on. Made a crucial clearance off the line in the first half. Did not offer much going forward.

Johnson – 6 –
Solid down the right, and presented the best service on the squad. Needs to keep his composure out there, though.

Stammler – 5 –
Looks thoroughly worn out, and spent most of the day chasing the play. Looking forward to seeing this guy play on a grass field day in and day out next year.

Ubiparipovic – 5 –
Chased and worked alongside Stammler. Had some neat connecting play, but also took a few wrong angles and had a few bad giveaways.

Richards – 6 –
Got the game winner, perhaps even despite himself, after spurning several chances. His teammates were as thrilled for him after the goal as they were frustrated after he repeatedly missed them in space.

Rojas – 4 –
Was this guy even on the field? Pulled for Kandji early in the second half, and the difference was palpable. Looks to be on the first plane back to Venezuela when the season ends.

Wolyniec – 7 –
Made himself a constant nuisance up top and was unlucky not to score after absolutely tattooing the near post in the second half. A savvy, effective veteran who is willing to play third or fourth fiddle on an MLS is a player that New York, whomever is calling the shots, would be insane not to bring back.

Angel – 7 –
Perhaps he’s not the DP caliber 20 goal scorer he was when he came into the league, but gave 100% for the cause, which usually meant coming back to midfield to get the ball and get whacked. Get this guy on a grass surface, with another high caliber forward beside him, and 15 goals is a possibility.

Kandji – 7 – Impacted the game immediately when he came on, streaking up and down the left side. Spent the rest of the game hitting the turf to mixed success.

Sassano – NR – Came on late to spell the midfield.

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Red Bulls tie USL's Battery

Posted on 17 March 2008 by Nathaniel E. Baker

The New York Red Bulls played the Charleston Battery to a 1-1 tie in their make-up opener to the 2008 Carolina Challenge Cup at Charleston, S.C.’s Blackbaud Stadium Sunday. Trialist Kevin Mesa scored for Red Bull in the 78th minute, only four minutes after being subbed in for rookie Danleigh Borman. Sinisa Ubiparipovic, himself a second half substitute, got the assist. “The defender wasn’t marking me very well and I took the opportunity, made a run, got the ball…and just flicked it in,” Mesa told ASN after the game.The goalscorer (c) CSA/Julia Fizer

The lead was short-lived, however, as the Battery countered on the very next play. David Kenga grabbed the unassisted equalizer for the hosts and the 1-1 score remained until the final whistle. “We had plenty of chances to win the game,” assistant coach Richie Williams said afterwards. “Unfortunately we didn’t…but overall it’s an exhibition game and we’re building for the season. It would have been nice to win but a draw’s okay and hopefully we’ll build on this for the next two games.” With Juan Carlos Osorio away “scouting players in South America,” as the team’s official word states (rumors are he will come back with one or maybe even two new signings), Williams assumed head coaching duties for the day. Osorio will be back “in the next couple of days,” Williams said, presumably in time for the team’s next game Wednesday night.
Echeverry gets upended (c) ASN/Julia Fizer
New York was short four starters, with Jozy Altidore and Hunter Freeman on national team duty, Dane Richards injured and Dave van den Bergh absent for undisclosed reasons. Altidore was replaced by Oscar Echeverry, the team’s sole veteran acquisition so far this off-season.

Kevin Goldthwaite started for Freeman on the back line, with a pair of rookies, Luke Sassano and Danleigh Borman, filling in for Richards and van den Bergh, respectively. Borman, a 23 year-old South Africa native selected in the Supplemental Draft out of the University of Rhode Island, has impressed in pre-season and did so again today. “Danleigh was good,” said Williams of the rookie’s performance today. “His crosDanleigh Borman (c) ASN/Julia Fizersing was good. He served up some good balls for our forwards.” Williams and Red Bull personnel implied Borman would factor into the team’s regular season lineup as well, perhaps as a starter. The team is thin at left wing and Borman’s solid fundamentals (a rarity from left-footers in MLS) and pace are a nice fit.

Borman saw a lot of touches and was responsible for many of New York’s best chances in the first half. Several times placing crosses directly onto the foreheads of Red Bull forwards. In the 19th minute he found Juan Pablo Angel, who headed the ball narrowly over the bar. In the 37th, his freekick from the right flank found Mike Magee, whose header hit the outside post. Borman also took the team’s corners from the right side.
“I think it was a good exercise in general,” Angel said of the game. “We need to get ourselves match fit–that’s probably the main concern right now.” Claudio ReyStammler chases down a loose ball (c) ASN/Julia Fizerna echoed Angel’s sentiments. “Today Charleston did very well to make it difficult for us…it takes time when you have three or four guys getting their feet wet it’s not going to just happen overnight, but it was encouraging; a lot of guys did well.”

Reyna said he was hopeful for better luck with his health this season. “I feel very strong at the moment. I’ve been working out very hard. This preseason, I haven’t missed a day of training–I feel very good. I just want it to continue.”

With the tie, the teams are tied for second place after one round of play in the tournament. The expansion San Jose Earthquakes, with three points from Saturday’s victory over Toronto FC, are first. Red Bull faces Toronto next, on Wednesday night, before concluding the tournament against San Jose Saturday.

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