New York Red Bulls: Red Bulls will go as far as their defense will carry them

New York Red Bulls. Aaron Long (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
New York Red Bulls. Aaron Long (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /

The New York Red Bulls broke through once on Sunday night en-route to beating rival D.C. United at home. But, the win was mostly due to their defense being on point.

The New York Red Bulls continue to play well all while still brewing up the final recipe that will work best for them in the MLS playoffs.

Under Chris Armas so far, the Red Bulls’ wins have been far from soothing and rather gritty. They are not scoring a ton of goals or blowing anyone out, but they are walking away with point after point.

The biggest reason for this is that their defense has been on it. Of course, there have been a few mishaps. But, since they are coming off another clean sheet, it is fair to say this leaning more towards being their identity.

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Considering the win vs D.C. is more likely the type of match that we will be seeing in the playoffs, it is encouraging to see the Red Bulls take on the challenge.

The Red Bulls got a great performance out of Kaku again as he comes into his own. The offense even generated what felt like a million chances on their end.

But, the defense needs to be appreciated too. Luis Robles made some nice saves and the United simply did not have a ton of chances. The Red Bulls smothered them pretty much the entire way.

In what has become arguably the best defensive unit in the league, Tim Parker, Aaron Long, Robles and crew seem to be paving the way for the Red Bulls.

They might not get all the glory, and they might not always “play pretty”, but it is this defense that will carry the Red Bulls as far as they go.

The Red Bulls rarely get shut out. That is not their problem. But, playing in the Eastern playoffs against the elite offenses like NYC, Atlanta, and even surging Philly, the defense is who will need to hold their own.

It is not surprise that many are so quick to praise this defensive unit. They rarely give up goals.

I guess my main point is that in the playoffs, and in order to win the Shield, the Red Bulls are going to need to keep winning matches like they have been.

Play great defense, minimize their opponent chances, and clear, clear, clear the ball when the offense gets them ahead. That is part of their recipe for success, or really any team, but the Red Bulls just need to keep doing it the best.

The New York Red Bulls have plenty of matches left to set themselves up for the Cup playoffs and hang another Shield banner in Red Bull Arena.

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But, in order to do that they need to understand their new identity under Armas. Defense, defense, defense.