Red Bulls Shedding More Than They’re Grabbing

Salary Cap has tied up RBNY's front office
by Daniel Feuerstein   |   Thursday, January 16, 2014

USA head coach Jurgen Klinsmann needs to form a core team before World Cup Qualifying begins

Before the New Year struck, Red Bull New York shed some salary and released some of the players they had or just recently brought over in last year’s summer transfer window.

David Carney was a casualty along with Brandon Barklage, who only lasted for 2 full seasons. Andre Akpan was also released but was brought back at a lower price and Bobby Convey was traded to Toronto FC for some SuperDraft picks.

But while it seems that everything was looking fine and the offseason appeared a bit dull, the New Year came and on Jan. 2, Markus Holgersson, with 1 year left on his contract, agreed with the club to go their separate ways.

And now the concerns have popped up as it feels like the backline is wearing thin. Sure, Roy Miller and Bobby Convey are at leftback, Jamison Olave and Ibrahim Sekagya are going to be centerbacks, but Kosuke Kimura isn’t one to place much confident in as a rightback. New York has lost 2 players that have played the position – Holgersson was a natural RB before Hans Backe forced him to play central in 2012. Who is available or ready from within the Red Bulls Academy to fill up the depth chart?

Recently on the Red Bulls website, Sporting Director Andy Roxburgh discussed the 2013 season as a success and wants to rebuild the team for a challenging 2014 season. While it’s nice to hear how excited he is for this upcoming season, he also sounded a bit disgruntled because he wanted to add on to the squad.

Once again the extreme salary cap from Major League Soccer has handcuffed him and forced Roxburgh to release players he probably didn’t want to give up. While it’s always a challenge for clubs to duplicate successful seasons, the Red Bulls could have a better ending than 2013, remain the same or sadly have a terrible finish.

While it’s commendable that the majority of the roster – as well as the starting XI is still intact and they still have a threat of scoring goals anywhere on the field – the one thing that is needed now of course is a solid rightback on the backline and the hope that Luis Robles doesn’t regress.

But while the recent rumors of Xavi Hernandez from Barcelona might be coming over after the World Cup this summer for Spain sounds interesting, the club should be more concerned about how they will start the season on their campaign to defend the Supporters’ Shield.

So for Roxburgh, he should know what he got himself into when he took the job. But to be honest there are no complaints on the job he has done so far. RBNY fans need to see more and hopefully he can try to ignore the pain of learning how to manage the acquisition rules of this league.

NEXT UP: March 8 – Red Bull New York vs. Vancouver Whitecaps, BC Place, Vancouver, Canada. 7:30 p.m. EST, TSN.


Ramapo College
Club Domestic:
Red Bull NY
Club Foreign:
PSG, ManU, Maccabbi Haifa
Original New York Cosmos fan, reborn soccer fan since 1994 USA World Cup. Feuerstein’s Fire podcast host. Covers NY Red Bulls for SN, and promotes all levels of American soccer from both sides of issues.