Harrison, NJ - After last Sunday's disastrous 4-1 loss to D.C. United at RFK Stadium, the New York Bulls returned to Red Bull Arena and rebounded with a 1-0 win over the New England Revolution.
The victory improved New York’s record to 4-3-1. As a result, New York is currently in second place in the Eastern Conference. Former Fordham University standout rookie goal keeper Ryan Meara played an excellent game and made some tremendous saves on Saturday. His performance was enough to earn himself Red Bulls Player of the Match.
While this was a much needed victory for the Red Bulls, who have gone 4-1-1 over their past six matches, it may have come at cost. Already playing without defenders Wilman Conde, Roy Miller, Jan Gunnar Solli, midfielder Teemu Tainio and forwards Juan Agudelo and Jose Angulo, the injury ridden Red Bulls will now have to add Thierry Henry to the list because. He suffered a hamstring injury in the first half.
In addition to their injury woes, Rafa Marquez was serving the second game of a three-match suspension for his violent hit on San Jose Earthquakes midfielder Shea Salinas, which resulted in Salinas fracturing his clavicle in four places. Unlike Marquez who has been a liability to the Red Bulls, Thierry Henry has been the impact player which many Red Bulls supporters expect of him.
Living up to those expectations, Henry beautifully scored his MLS-leading ninth goal of the season in the seventh minute of the match. Accepting a pass from Red Bulls defender Connor Lade, Henry added the finishing touch as he chipped the ball over Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis to give the Red Bulls a 1-0 lead. Unfortunately for New York, Henry was soon on the ground in agony, as he injured his hamstring minutes later.
Following his exit, the Red Bulls lost it's offensive rhythm and was unable to produce another goal. Defensively, New York was fortunate that Ryan Maera was playing a sensational game because in the second half he prevented New England from equalizing.
With the Red Bulls struggling for the third straight match, one has to wonder how are they going to perform the next month without Thierry Henry. Even though Kenny Cooper has been a force for the Red Bulls, many will wonder if he's able to shoulder the offensive scoring load.
Will Dane Richards, Joel Lindpere, Medhi Ballouchy and Dax McCarty elevate their offensive output and help produce some goals? Will Red Bulls manager Hans Backe make more use of former FCNY standout Jhonny Atreaga?
Red Bulls fans will find out as soon as next Saturday, May 5, 2012 when New York squares off against the Los Angeles Galaxy over at the Home Depot Center.
Other MLS Results from the Weekend
Philadelphia Union lost 2-1 to the San Jose Earthquakes.
D.C. United won 3-2 over the Houston Dynamo.
Chicago Fire lost 2-1 to the Seattle Sounders.
Los Angeles Galaxy battled FC Dallas to a 1-1 draw.
Cesar Diaz is a freelance writer for several online soccer publications. If there's a soccer topic you believe needs to be written about, please feel free to contact him. Easily approachable, you may contact him at CDiazNYC@gmail.com and @CesarDiazNYC.