Red Bulls Have Problems, Natives Are Restless
One part of New Jersey at the moment is quiet, steel bars are assembled, concrete lower deck is in place while the only noise is the small commuter train, NJ Transit trains as well as the Amtrak trains are going across. Meanwhile outside of Harrison, NJ the swamps of the Meadowlands including all of Northeast, NJ and in New York City there are major grumblings going on. O.k. I’m being kind to all of you. Everyone is angry and disgusted with the way the club has played and the way Juan Carlos Osorio is managing the squad.
I have to admit that higher expectations have already came when the club was going to the Qualifying Round of the CONCACAF Champions League, US Open Cup tourney & a possible return to the MLS Cup final. Since the start of the season it has looked to be bleak very fast. At home they have won only once in three matches, but there was a potential of having at least nine points at home if they didn’t lose the lead late against New England in second half stoppage time and going into the 90th minute against DC United, not only did they lose the lead, they lost the match. Five points dropped at home while on the road they haven’t scored a goal let alone get a win, only a draw at Houston.
Once again formation changes with every opponent and with the additions of Carlos Johnson of Costa Rica & Alfredo Pacheco of El Salvador and supposedly with a refocused Jorge Rojas to run the middle, it seems that those expectations have become nightmares. Even though they earned a win on Wednesday, April 29th at the San Jose Earthquakes in their US Open Cup qualifier (and now they will be on the road in DC United on May 20th for the 3rd round spot) they still laid an egg in the Home Depot Center against the Galaxy in a stadium where they have had plenty of success.
If it’s not the midfield helping out Juan Pablo Angel, then occasionally it’s the formations that Head Coach Juan Carlos Osorio has formed. Whenever the club has been situated into a 4-5-1, that means Angel is the loan striker where Macoumba Kandji is pushed back into the midfield as a LW-Midfielder. Once again no matter how many times I have said this to anyone, Kandji is not a midfielder he is a player that needs to be up top with Angel who can score and he can play the ball as a holding forward while giving service.
The message boards have already been filled and the supporters have voiced their displeasure of the club and assume that Red Bull only cares about their club in Austria and their Motocrossed riders and skateboarding tricksters. The only reason that Red Bull Arena is being built is no longer about the football. It’s about those motocross & skateboarding athletes and not for this MLS side. While it’s easy to get all worked up and assume those things, what most are forgetting is that the damned rules of the league with their extreme salary cap and different rules to acquire players has really hamstrung the Red Bull Corporation in making their New York club into a continued and consistentsuccess from the start. When things are going bad, the assumptions and the made up excuses of “they don’t care about the club” comments pop up. I don’t really believe Red Bull paid all this money to build a stadium for an area that has been starving for a real home and get out of the cash draining Meadowlands NJSEA to instead have Red Bull bikers & skateboards filling up their own stadium instead of for the club.
As of right now the lynch mob is out for the head of Juan Carlos Osorio. They have said they want him gone right now. They are tired of the formation changes and bringing in players that either don’t work, or being put out of position. I think there is a certain player that is missing from this squad and at the moment he is in Texas playing for FC Dallas. Dutchman Dave van den Bergh who wanted out of New York because of family reasons wanted to be closer to his wife’s family & his own family in Dallas and his son who needed special treatment for a certain type of medical condition. Is it possible that his leaving might have caused the scale to tip in the wrong direction for the Red Bulls? You hope this isn’t the case but I have to say that if Osorio can’t get wins by the Houston Dynamo home match on Saturday, May 16th. I have to go with the mad villagers and say it’s time to try someone else.
But let me add something to this story. Isn’t it ironic that both finalists in last seasons MLS Cup are having major troubles right now. The Crew lost their coach to Seattle just as the Red Bulls lost Van den Bergh in a trade to FC Dallas. Can the ship be righted? It’s possible, but as of right now in the tri-state area the roars of anger and disgust are loud and clear. These next four home matches are crucial for Red Bull New York. If something positive doesn’t happen then Osorio’s head will be resting on the chopping block.