With a 1-0 playoff road win over the San Jose Earthquakes, the New York Red Bulls reminded both New Yorkers and New Jerseyans that they are the only "New York" soccer club that currently plays in Major League Soccer and is competing for the 2010 MLS Cup.
For all the media attention the New York Cosmos organization has been receiving as of late, tonight's Red Bull win will remind Major League Soccer fans that they are the NY team who opened up a new stadium, brought in a new coach along with world class athletes to give the states of New York and New Jersey a 2010 competitive soccer club.
In a game without Thierry Henry, Joel Lindpere once again demonstrated that he's been most consistent players for the 2010 Red Bulls. Playing against a well balanced defensive San Jose Earthquakes team, Joel Lindpere was able to give his Red Bull teammates a 1-0 lead in the 55th minute of the second half.
A week after he scored the last Red Bull goal in the regular season, Joel Lindpere ironically scored the first game winning postseason goal. For all the attention, the trio of Juan Pablo Angel, Thierry Henry and Rafa Marquez receive, the trio of Joel Lindpere, Tim Ream and Dane Richards have been the most consistent and productive for the past few weeks.
Overall, the San Jose Earthquakes played a well game. Their goalkeeper Jon Busch played a marvelous game as he made six out of seven saves.Tragically, the Earthquakes attempted three shots on goal and didn't capitalize on their fast break attempts.
Even with the MLS Golden Boot winner, Chris Wondolowki in their corner, the Earthquakes weren't able to find the back of the net. No matter how aggressively they pushed the ball, tonight wasn't their night. As a result, 10,525 pro-Earthquakes went home without a win.
Their second game will take place on Thursday, November 4, 2010 at Red Bull Arena. In order for San Jose to advance to the next round, they will have win by a two goals.
With their playoff destiny in their hands, the Red Bulls need a win or a tie in order to advance to the Eastern Conference Championship. With Juan Pablo Angel possibly playing his final home game next Thursday, it'll be interesting to see how the fans will acknowledge that evening.
Cesar Diaz covers Soccer for Latino Sports. Please email him your questions and concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org.