Once again the cry from the New York Red Bulls was to get three points and keep their hopes alive of making the playoffs. The Red Bulls salvaged a point at Toronto at the end of regulation, but Los Angeles Galaxy came to town, looking to officially clinch the Supporters Shield at Red Bull Arena.
Once again the little engine that could in Luke Rodgers was running all over the pitch and he was able to get the big goals when needed and it would come off a rebound from a set piece. Joel Lindpere on the far side took the corner in the 32nd minute and delivered a good ball.
Coming out of nowhere was Jan Gunnar Solli and a fantastic header was struck at the net, but Donovan Ricketts made a good one handed save to stop the chance. Rodgers was allowed to get the rebound and lifted his right leg to roof the ball into the net for the lead.
He could have gotten a second in the 38th minute, but unfortunately the inside of the near post denied him. It was a well worked ball as Lindpere brought it up the left flank with a solid cross to Thierry Henry inside the area. A quick turn and pass by Henry to Rodgers who couldn’t finish.
The second half was all about Henry as he showed class and was hungry to lead his side to victory. He got his tally in the 59th minute as Rafa Marquez sent a brilliant ball that sprung Henry into a run. Ricketts came off his line to cut off the angle, and Henry chipped the ball, which tapped the inside of the far post and then went in.
Henry also had a great chance in the 81st minute to get his second of the match, but just like Rodgers, he would nail the post as well. After stealing the ball from David Beckham, Henry sized up his chance but sadly hit the woodwork.
The big save of the night came from Frank Rost in the 84th minute to keep the clean sheet. A set piece five yards away from the Red Bulls area and it was Beckham ready to deliver. Rost tracked the ball well and punched it out. After ninety minutes the Red Bulls held on and got their clean sheet.
While it was a great performance from the Red Bulls and Thierry Henry — who was awarded the man of the match, I felt that Rafa Marquez was the man of the match. He hustled for the ball, played a strong defensive game and created that brilliant cross that got the second goal of the match.
After assisting on Henry’s goal he was seen kissing the shield on his shirt. When he was subbed out for Dax McCarty in the 82nd minute Marquez was given a standing ovation from the Red Bull Arena crowd. So with the international break coming the club can rest up and relax before their next league match.