With a $3.5 million salary, Tim Cahill has earned his fair share of criticism since joining the New York Red Bulls. Entering Saturday’s match, he had just one goal in 1,700-plus minutes. That lack of statistical production led to some disparaging, on-air comments from Taylor Twellman.
Cahill took to Twitter to respond, calling Twellman a “muppet.”
But talk is cheap. Cahill responded with more than 140 characters in Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Toronto FC.
Two goals will temporarily silence his critics. Cahill finally has the “production” that warrants his base salary. He finally has the “numbers.”
But while numbers never lie, they are misleading.
Cahill means more to New York than just goals. That has been apparent since day one. It’s a sentiment Mike Petke has echoed time and time again:
I trust him to fill in pretty much any spot that is needed on this field. That’s why he’s, like I used the word time and time again, invaluable You know, I've been asked questions about his lack of goal scoring this and that and it makes me laugh...He brings so much to this team.
Whether it’s a game-winner in the 89th minute, or even a defensive header in the 88th minute, it doesn’t matter. Cahill’s contribution for New York extends beyond the stat sheet. He proved it with his handling of Kenny Cooper following a heartbreaking loss to DC United. He proved it again on Saturday afternoon.
And as Ives Galarcep pointed out on Twitter, forget the numbers. Anyone would be fortunate to have Cahill on their team. MLS coaches agree.
Even if he comes with a $3.5 million price tag.
Roy Miller has made the most of his second chance with the Red Bulls. After intense scrutiny, the Costa Rican international deserves some acknowledgement. His superb touch and service led to Cahill’s first goal.