Monday, April 26, 2010

NYRB Open Cup Starting XI

Brian Lewis is reporting on the planned starting XI and some substitutions we should expect for tomorrow's Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup qualifier tomorrow. Here's the reported lineup for your New York Red Bulls:

          Chinn          Agudelo
Nielsen   Tchani   Stammler   Ubi
Borman Mendes Boyens Sassano

We should also expect to see Austin da Luz enter the game in the second half (presumably for Nielsen). Chris Albright, still on IR and unavailable for MLS play until May 8, should see second half action as well. He'll be inserted at right back, with Luke Sassano sliding into a central defender role for either Andrew Boyens or Carlos Mendes.

With Coach Backe announcing the starting XI and a couple of pre-planned second half substitutions, he seems to be treating this game a bit like a friendly. He did state, though, that he feels the difference between some of the reserves and the regular starters is not that big, and maybe issued a small challenge to his regulars when he added, "I think sometimes this team looks more composed on the ball." This is an area we know Coach Backe has his club working on this week; his comments following Saturday's game were critical of the teams ability to maintain possession and control the game.

I am pleased that Coach Backe has made the decision to bring out the reserves for this match. I believe they can succeed in this early USOC qualifier against a tired Philly team under the imposing pressure of their coach Pietr Nowak. Also, while I want the Red Bulls to take this tournament seriously, coming off of last season, I agree with the decision to make MLS league play the Number One priority this year.

Be sure to check in with TVN later tonight or tomorrow. Viper, whoshotsam, YSC, and I will have our usual predictions, full of astute insight entertainment value!
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