After an exciting and disappointing game last week against the Chicago Fire, the Red Bulls had to regroup and analyze what went wrong.
The Chicago Fire is a much weaker team, with flaws as clear as water both on offense and on defense. Still they managed to score 5 times on the Red Bulls.
Facing the Toronto FC this Saturday, the team is going to have to perform at a much higher level if they want to get this win on the road and especially if they want to make a run on the Eastern Conference.
Added to the problem, Tim Cahill and Roy Miller won’t be in the field to help their squad, since they are gone till July, playing in their respective teams’ camps for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
One good thing can be said – the Red Bulls offensive system isn’t bad at all. The chemistry between Thierry Henry and Bradley Wright-Phillips led the team to scoring 4 times, with a little help from Cahill and Lloyd Sam. They won’t have Cahill out on the field, but I’m sure coach Petke will figure out who to replace him with and still keep the offensive system flowing.
So what needs to be done in short term?
Address the defensive collapse that happened last Saturday!
It’s unacceptable to be overwhelmed by such a weak offense like the Fire’s offense. On 3 of the 5 goals they scored, one could surely state that it wasn’t an offensive accomplishment, but a defensive failure all around. Players not getting covered by defenders, no on ball defense hard enough to avoid crossings and most of all lack of communication among the defenders caused New York to sit on their hands while the Fire scored over and over again. You could see Petke’s expression of disbelief on the bench while his team just crumbled. If it wasn’t for the forwards doing their job and making the game an interesting match, it would have been just an ugly beating.
So move on from last Saturday’s disaster, deal with Roy Miller and Cahill not being on the field and make it happen on both ends and you’ll be fine my dear Red Bulls.