Good morning! It's matchday @The Cathedral of Football, Red Bull Arena (built by Makita), with your NY Red Bulls taking on the Eastern Conference powerhouse New England Revolution (3:30pm ET, NBC Sports Network, match notes here). It's another must-win, season-defining tilt for the Red Bulls against yet another I95 foe. That said, let's see how both team come into this one.
To say that the Red Bulls will be sporting a makeshift backline would be the understatement of the year, with Keel, Miller and Conde all out through injury and DJ Jan Gunnar Solli questionable for this one. That said, Thierry Henry feels that there can be no excuses today. A win is a must to get the season back on track.
The New England Revolution had last weekend off, but are in the midst of a 2 game losing streak. Despite that, they're coming to Red Bull Arena with absolutely no fear and with the ageless Shalrie Joseph still bossing MLS midfields. With the Red Bulls' defensive woes, they'll feel confident that the three points are there for the taking. But enought of that, let's get to some predictions:
Matt Conroy (aka Who Shot Sam) has this for us:
With the Red Bulls' back line decimated by injuries, this could be ugly. In order to win, Thierry Henry and Kenny Cooper - if he plays - will simply need to outscore New England, because I would be shocked if the Red Bulls were able to keep a clean sheet. Another 3PM start (thanks Chris Heck) as well, so you can expect maybe 10,000 fans rattling around in Red Bull Arena. (By the way I called the ticket office this week to get help transferring a ticket and nobody answered. What in the world do they do all day?) In any case, I'm going to be wildly optimistic and say that we somehow scrape a draw. 2-2. Henry with a brace and Markus Holgersson with a brace of own goals at the other end, neither of which will be his fault, according to Hans Backe.
With the joke of a backline that we'll be featuring today, I'm saying we're losing this one. Shalrie Joseph will have his way in midfield so I'm thinking 3-2 to New England, with Henry and Coooper getting one each.
Tom Faust has this for us:
I get nauseous just thinking about this game. Hoping it's not as bad as DC and we escape with a 3-1 loss. Going to go vomit now.
David Kilpatrick (aka Dr.K.) has this for us:
As depleted as we are, we're still far better off than Jay Heaps's Revs. For the 56th meeting between the sides, the scoring touch will return, Kenny F'ing Cooper inspired by the sight of 5,000 children wearing his shirt and singing his name. Or something like that. Defense has to improve. Has to. NY to win, 3-1.
Last, but not least, the great You Suck Corrales has this for us:
The back four we put out is going to be quite amusing. The gaffes, errors, blunders and miscues should have us keeling over in the aisles with laughter. We may break a club record for dirty looks shot from player to player. Henry will get sent off for kicking the ball into the stands twice in anger and frustration within the first half hour. I am calling for a 0-4 drubbing at the hands of NER. Let the crisis continue.Alrighty then! I may, or may not, be missing this one as I have to juggle Youth Soccer commitments today. I'm calling a loss but I'm praying we'll get something today. Let's hope for the best because Optimism Rules! Ha ha!