I know, I know, the Sounders punked New York in the season and their franchise opener tonight, winning 3-0. Great job.
I am never sorry to see the Red Bulls lose for a variety of reasons, and I was glad to see Seattle get off to a good start. Great crowd, good atmosphere (I’m OK with the band thing) and some neat finishes made the Red Bulls look bad.
But, consider another question.
How hard is it to make the Red Bulls look bad?
I know, I know, New York made it to the MLS Cup final last year as the “Western” Conference champions. Once there, they were drilled by Columbus in the final. But think farther back to what the Red Bulls really were. They were a medicore team last year that when given a chance to clinch a playoff spot on its own, crapped the bed against the Chicago Fire. They backed in when other teams turned out to be even more medicore than them (I’m looking at you DC United). They were your classic Win, Loss, Tie team in any particular 3-game stretch, save for one homestand where they rocked 9 points and saved themselves.
I don’t want to rain on Seattle’s parade. That’s not the intent. They get full marks for a game well played. Especially in Montero, they have found a bit of quality talent. I just hope the win is kept in the right perspective. It’s exciting to have a new team, and it’s exciting that they won their opener. They will never be more jazzed for a game than they will be for their first season opener – and against a medicore opponent like New York, that and some quality play should add up to a win. But as we go through the season, better teams than they will make the Red Bulls look like donkeys. There’s a long season still to go.
As long as the Red Bulls lack any speed at the back, can’t defend a long ball, and fail to put anyone else in the area when Juan Pablo Angel heads the ball down to try and pass it, then their results aren’t going to change very much from what we saw tonight.
Meanwhile, I’d do just about anything at this point to get the image out of my head of the shots they showed of Drew Carey, who somehow looked older than his “Price is Right” predecessor Bob Barker.