Match Preview: Columbus Crew vs. New York Red Bulls
COLUMBUS CREW vs NEW YORK RED BULLS
COLUMBUS CREW STADIUM, Columbus, Ohio
May 4, 2013 (WEEK 10, MLS Game #82)
4 p.m. ET (NBC SN)
Two old foes in the thick of the hunt for the Eastern Conference leadership meet Saturday afternoon in front an NBC Sports Network audience when the Columbus Crew play host to the New York Red Bulls. The Crew returned to their winning ways last weekend with a 3-0 home win against D.C. United, while the Red Bulls are coming off back-to-back wins for the first time this season after last weekend’s 2-1 victory in Toronto. The teams are separated by two points in the East, New York just two points conference leader Montréal.
REFEREE: Armando Villarreal. AR1 (bench): Craig Lowry; AR2 (opposite): Claudio Badea; 4th: Geoff Gamble
MLS Career: 13 games; FC/gm: 24.0; Y/gm: 2.9; R: 6; pens: 4
DISABLED LIST: none
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: CLB: Glauber
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: CLB: Federico Higuain
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none
ALL-TIME (54 meetings): Crew 23 wins, 64 goals … Red Bulls 24 wins, 75 goals … Ties 7
AT COLUMBUS (27 meetings): Crew 14 wins, 37 goals … Red Bulls 10 wins, 37 goals … Ties 3
RETURN MATCHES: 5/26: New York Red Bulls vs. Columbus Crew, 5 p.m. ET (UniMas); 8/10: Columbus Crew vs. New York Red Bulls, 7:30 p.m. ET
LAST YEAR (MLS):
4/7: CLB 1, NY 4 (Marshall 89 – Cooper 3, 13; Henry 40, 90)
9/15: NY 3, CLB 1 (Henry 9, 93+; McCarty 79 – Mirosevic 3)
- Columbus has not defeated New York since the 2010 season. The Red Bulls won both meetings a year ago, a 4-1 win at Crew Stadium and a 3-1 win at Red Bull Arena; they are 2-0-2 in the last four meetings in the series.
- The Red Bulls victory a year ago in Columbus was their first there since a 2-0 win July 19, 2006. The Crew were 5-0-2 at home vs. New York in between.
- Coaches record: Robert Warzycha vs. NY: P10 W4 L4 T2 … Mike Petke vs. CLB: first game
The Columbus Crew returned home and returned to their winning ways, rolling to a 3-0 victory against D.C. United on Saturday evening at Crew Stadium. The Crew are in fifth place in the Eastern Conference with 12 points from 8 matches.
- Back in the starting lineup, Jairo Arrieta quickly paid dividends by setting up Dominic Oduro's opening goal in the 15th minute. Arrieta took a cross from Eddie Gaven on the left side of the box and dribbled toward the endline before cutting a pass to the middle where Oduro buried a shot.
- The Crew then doubled the lead in the 26th minute from yet another corner kick, as Federico Higuain found fullback Josh Williams 10 yards in front of the goal, and he netted his third goal of the season with a sidewinder.
- The Crew made it 3-0 in second minute of first-half stoppage time when Gaven heeled the ball to Arrieta, who was taken down from behind by United defender Brandon McDonald. Higuain converted the penalty after a stutter-step to effectively seal the match.
- Crew head coach Robert Warzycha made two changes to the team that dropped a 1-0 decision to the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park. Tony Tchani and Jairo Arrieta came into the side, in place of Tyson Wahl and Ben Speas.
- COLUMBUS CREW (4-2-3-1): Andy Gruenebaum - Josh Williams, Chad Marshall, Glauber, Agustin Viana (Tyson Wahl 20) - Tony Tchani, Danny O'Rourke (Matias Sanchez 88) - Dominic Oduro, Federico Higuain, Eddie Gaven - Jairo Arrieta (Konrad Warzycha 85)
- The Crew kept a clean sheet for the first time since their season-opening 3-0 victory at Chivas USA. They are still one of just six teams allowing less than a goal per game, and have allowed more than one goal just once all season.
- “We'd like to have a couple of more shutouts,” goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum said. “Having said that, if we can be there at the end of the season with that we're a happy group of people who are in the playoffs, hopefully. We have the talent at the back and going forward to keep possession and just shut out teams. That's what we need to do. If we can get a zero on our end we'll let the other side [offense] take care of itself.”
- Jairo Arrieta made his first appearance in the starting lineup since March 23, the last of three consecutive starts he made before leaving on national team duty with Costa Rica. Arrieta contributed his second assist, his first point since netting his only goal of the year March 9 at Vancouver.
- “I've been working with the team to be able to earn that [starting job] back. Unfortunately with the trip to the national team, coming back I had to work that much harder to show the coach. I came to this team to be a starter,” Arrieta said. Said head coach Robert Warzycha: “If you look at his game at Chicago and his game in Montreal [both as a substitute] he is highly motivated every single game. He is exactly the same. He is working hard and likes the physical contact. Sometimes he's just more successful.”
- With the return of Arrieta to the lineup, Dominic Oduro was moved back to the right flank, with Eddie Gaven shifting sides to the left.
- “We've been working really hard this week trying to as much as possible to get something together,” Oduro said. “This was a breakthrough. Of all the games we played together this is the one we really combined well. … Today what we did is something we have to grow on. This is a genesis of how the three of us with Higuain can combine our forces to play.”
- In addition, Tony Tchani made his first start of 2013, playing in a deep-lying midfield spot as Agustín Viana moved to left back in place of Tyson Wahl.
- “I think playing at home the gameplan would be exactly the same – it doesn’t matter who was on the field,” said Warzycha. “I think we talked about being sharper, we talked about passing the ball quicker … I think some of the players were fatigued. I saw fatigue with Tyson Wahl a little bit; I saw fatigue with Ben Speas. Having tactics that we were going to attack and have the ball around their box, it was very important to have [Jairo] Arrieta on the field.”
- While Oduro scored his team-leading fourth goal of the season, his third goal in the last four games, fullback Josh Williams netted for a third this season. The Crew have scored five goals this season from set pieces, level with FC Dallas for most in MLS.
- Konrad Warzycha, son of head coach Robert, became a part of the second father-son tandem to play for the same team in MLS history, when he came on as a late substitute. Alex and Teal Bunbury both played for Kansas City; Bob Bradley coached son Michael with the MetroStars.
- “This was definitely something I've been looking forward to for a long time,” the younger Warzycha said after the match. “To get that first appearance for the Crew, especially with the crowd we had here tonight -- everybody was electrified, it was a dream come true.” Said the Crew head coach: “It was something unique and obviously I’m very proud.”
NEW YORK RED BULLS
The New York Red Bulls won their second match on the trot, getting a late winner for a 2-1 victory against Toronto FC at BMO Field. The Red Bulls are in a tie for second place in the Eastern Conference with 14 points from 10 matches.
- The Red Bulls opened the scoring in the 38th minute. After slipping down the left side of the box, Roy Miller skipped a cross into the box from the left flank that Thierry Henry dummied perfectly, leaving Tim Cahill with an easy left-footed finish past TFC goalkeeper Joe Bendik.
- But Toronto FC leveled the score in the 83rd minute. After Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles came well off his line to deal with a free kick, Jonathan Osorio picked up the loose clearance and delivered a composed finish from outside the penalty area.
- Yet the Red Bulls once again made TFC pay late. After a missed clearance from defender Ashtone Morgan, Henry skipped down the left side and drifted a cross to the far post, where Cahill was waiting with a leaping header to punctuate his first multi-goal game since coming to MLS last summer.
- Red Bulls head coach Mike Petke made two changes to the team that rolled to a 4-1 victory against the New England Revolution at Red Bull Arena. Jamison Olave came into central defense in place of Heath Pearce, and Lloyd Sam started in midfield for Dax McCarty.
- NEW YORK RED BULLS (4-4-1-1): Luis Robles - Brandon Barklage, Jamison Olave, Markus Holgersson, Roy Miller - Lloyd Sam (Kosuke Kimura 71), Tim Cahill, Eric Alexander, Jonny Steele - Thierry Henry - Fabian Espindola (Peguy Luyindula 75).
- The Red Bulls have won back-to-back games, their first consecutive victories since last Aug. 10-19, when they defeated Portland and Houston, a span of 19 MLS games.
- To give up that goal was tough to swallow, especially the way it was given up, but that’s soccer. But to come back on the road and get that winning goal is definitely a confidence booster, I’m very happy about that,” said Red Bulls head coach Mike Petke. Said Lloyd Sam: “It’s nine out of 12 points, which is huge for us, confidence and everything. On the road, two road wins. We’re looking forward to the next game.”
- Tim Cahill scored both Red Bulls goals, his first goals in MLS since scoring his only previous league goal Aug. 19, 2012 vs. Portland.
- “The two goals today were just the cherry on the cake because he does exactly what we ask him to,” head coach Mike Petke said. “He leads us in the midfield, he plays very stingy defense and he’s a workhorse. He’s an example for our young midfielders.”
- Sam made his first start of the season, playing in a wide right midfield role as Cahill shifted into the center of the park.
- “I thought in the first half especially, we played some beautiful passing and [I] sat well in there with Eric [Alexander] and pulled Jonny [Steele] in from the left and had Lloyd [Sam] breaking. It was a bit of a luxury today and it seemed really nice,” said Cahill. “But the discipline and consistency has to be there.”
- After scoring three goals over the previous five games, Thierry Henry recorded his first assist of the season, setting up the game-winner. A year ago, Henry had 12 assists (tied for fifth in the league) to go with 15 goals.
- Luis Robles started his 10th game in goal for the Red Bulls, conceding a single goal for the third consecutive match. Last year’s starter, Ryan Meara, and veteran Kevin Hartman are making their way back to full fitness.
- “Just like every single [position] on this team, it’s always going to be a royal rumble,” said Petke. “I’m looking for everybody to separate themselves at their given position. If I have two players at one position and one’s been playing and the other one is just pretty much even with him, well, that’s not enough to win that spot. I need somebody to step above and that goes all the way from the forwards back to the goalies. And when [Meara and Hartman] get back and healthy, I’ve always said, it’s going to be a great battle.”
- The Red Bulls do not expect to have midfielder Dax McCarty available again until mid-May at the earliest.
- “I’m not counting on him that quick, to be honest with you. I think it would be stupid, unless I’m told by the doctors, ‘He’s absolutely fine,’ to bring him back that quick,” said Petke. “He just had a slight tear and I was told two to two-and-a-half weeks and I believe that is around the Montreal game, so he still needs to get back in a little bit of fitness and get back with the team. I don’t project it.”