Why RBNY’s First Win Took So Long

After 6 games of frustrations, the club gets a victory
by Daniel Feuerstein   |   Friday, April 18, 2014

Branded Bulls – column on Red Bull NY (RBNY – NYRB) & the New Jersey area soccer scene.

The panic was palpable around Red Bull Arena on Wednesday evening as fans were hoping that the fight Red Bull New York showed down in our nation’s capital would make a return against the Philadelphia Union. And, thankfully for those fans, after the full 90 minutes were done, the club got in the win column for the first time in 2014.

But what were these reasons that they couldn’t put it all together within the first month of the season?

Basically it’s still the same roster like last year, including many of the pieces in the midfield, the partnership between Thierry Henry and Tim Cahill with Bradley Wright-Phillips filling in at times.

Obviously there are some new pieces to the puzzle that needed to gel and sadly that opening game in Vancouver wasn’t spectacular as they got blasted with 4 goals. New centerback Armando coming over from Barcelona’s B side has been reckless with several hard challenges. And let’s not forget the allergy to certain players known as field turf.

But the No. 1 culprit to this side not doing well in the first six games is simple – their starts to the matches were not spectacular. New York’s first half woes have always been poor when the season gets underway as they would allow a goal to the opposition. This was thought to be fixed in the first half in Montreal, but sadly that came crawling back at RFK Stadium against DC United.

And while there was panic from within the supporters, there was never any panic from coach Mike Petke. After his conversation with MSG Network, he felt things were ready to click. And against the Union, they did and the Red Bulls finally earned the full 3 points of the season.

As there were so many things that were going wrong with Eric Alexander in the last match against DC United, you have to say in this game there were things he did right. If there is quality from within Alexander, then the biggest problem that probably keeps his ability down could be confidence.

But that’s why Petke still uses him and believes in Alexander, who can change a game in the midfield. With injuries to Bobby Convey, and Tim Cahill also returning from a strained right hamstring muscle, it could be a big turnaround that can shake up the club and be a force again in the Eastern Conference.

But if there is one argument about when the first win was earned, it’s against the schedule-makers and powers that be, as last season’s first win was against Philadelphia during the fifth game of the season at Red Bull Arena. This time it took the seventh game against the Union to get the first win.

How about the boys at MLS HQ schedule the Union around the first 3 weeks of the season next year to help them out? Sound good, fans?

NEXT UP: April 23 – Red Bull New York vs. Houston Dynamo, Red Bull Arena, Harrison, N.J. 7:30 p.m. EST, MLS Live/MSG Network.


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.