Union-Red Bulls Preview
The New York Red Bulls have regularly bounced back from losses
in strong fashion, particularly after being shut out. With the
likely returns of two top offensive weapons Saturday night, they
hope that trend continues as they host a Philadelphia Union club
which has never won at Red Bull Arena.
A winner would not only claim the season series but also be
sitting atop the Eastern Conference, at least for one day if not
New York (11-8-5) sits one point behind Sporting Kansas City for
first place, while Philadelphia (10-7-7) is one point back of New
York. Kansas City travels to San Jose on Sunday night.
“It doesn’t matter where Philadelphia is in table, it’s three
points for us and that’s really our focus,” New York coach Mike
Petke told the team’s official website. “We’re not looking at them
where their standings are, we’re not looking at anything more than
us getting out there, getting back to what we’ve done well this
year and putting in a performance that’s worthy of three
The Red Bulls were without Thierry Henry and Tim Cahill in a 2-0
loss at Columbus last Saturday, snapping a four-match undefeated
streak. Petke said Henry is definitely expected to play this
weekend after being sidelined by Achilles inflammation, while
Cahill will likely play in some capacity after being out with a
torn PCL since July 27.
The duo has combined for 13 of the club’s 36 goals as well as
They’ll try to help New York improve upon its 5-1-1 record
following defeats this year, including 4-0-0 after being shut out.
The Red Bulls followed a 3-0 loss at Philadelphia on June 23 –
their most lopsided since a 4-1 defeat at D.C. on April 22, 2012 –
with a 2-0 victory over Houston.
“These guys have bounced back after bad performances all year,”
Petke said. “Can’t do anything about the past, it’s all about the
Philadelphia comes off a 2-0 home win over D.C. last Saturday.
The Union also won their most recent road game, 1-0 over Vancouver
on July 27 to end an 0-2-2 skid away from home, but they’ve lost
all five of their trips to New York, including a 2-1 final March
“It’s an arena, it’s a team that when we’ve gone up there hasn’t
been the most hospitable to us,” coach John Hackworth said. “But we
feel like we’re in a good way right now and we can only control
what we can, so our plan is to go up there and put in a performance
that will hopefully get us a result.”
Conor Casey scored twice in Philadelphia’s win over New York and
has eight goals in eight career games against them. He registered
his eighth and ninth goals of this season last Saturday, with the
first coming off Sebastien Le Toux’s league-leading 11th
The Red Bulls have won three in a row at home while outscoring
opponents 10-3. They’ve claimed a 22-11 goals advantage at home on