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The New York Red Bulls will try to improve keep their unblemished home record intact Sunday as they host the Portland Timbers (7 p.m. ET on MSG). The Red Bulls (12-7-5) are 8-0-3 at home this season and have a good chance of extending that mark as the Timbers (5-12-6) are 0-8-3 on the road.
Currently, New York has lost three of its last four games, but it did earn a 2-0 victory over the Houston Dynamo nine days ago.
Unfortunately, the Red Bulls will be without newly signed English midfielder Lloyd Sam who did not receive his international visa in time to make the match. Rafa Marquez will also not be a part of New York's lineup, as he aggravated a left calf injury earlier in the week.
Luckily, New York will still have Kenny Cooper, who will be facing his old team (Portland) for the first time since being shipped to the Red Bulls during a draft-day trade in January. Cooper currently leads the Red Bulls in scoring with 13 goals.
The newest member of the New York Red Bulls, English midfielder Lloyd Sam, will not be available for the Red Bulls' match on Sunday against the Portland Timbers.
Sam, who was signed on Thursday, has not yet received his international visa. The former Leeds and Notts County winger is not completely fit but is ready to begin his Red Bulls career. New York's coach, Hans Backe, is hoping to see Sam in action against Sporting Kansas City on Aug. 26.
Sam, 27, began his career with Charlton Athletic as an 18-year-old and scored six times in 119 appearances with the club. He scored five goals in 10 matches (including a hat trick against Yeovil Town on April 9) with League One side Notts County on loan from Leeds last season.
The New York Red Bulls announced Monday that they have traded midfielder Mehdi Ballouchy to the San Jose Earthquakes in exchange for an international roster spot and a 2013 conditional draft pick. Ballouchy made 10 starts among his 16 appearances this season, scoring one goal with two assists.
"We want to thank Mehdi for his service to the Red Bulls," New York Red Bulls General Manager and Sporting Director Erik Soler said. "It was a difficult decision to let Mehdi go. However, trading him provides us additional roster and financial flexibility moving forward."
Each team is allowed eight international spots on the roster each season. However, spots can be traded and potentially spent on an international player who may rather play stateside than toil in the Europe's sub leagues.
Ballouchy was in the midst of his second full season with the Red Bulls. He was acquired from the Colorado Rapids on Sept. 14, 2010 in exchange for forward Macoumba Kandji. This season, Ballouchy made 16 appearances and 10 starts, recording one goal and two assists. He made 51 total appearances during his time in New York.
The Australian international said he was never interested in moving from the English Premier League to Australia's A-League.
"It's simple. This is a massive move for me. Moving to the A League, in all fairness, would have been a step backwards. And that's no disrespect. It's basically, I want to still play at a high level. There's still another World Cup for me to play in and qualify for the Australian team, and this is a massive opportunity," Cahill said. "I didn't speak to any A League clubs and it was never in my plans. The one thing I do in Australia is create pathways for kids to follow their dreams with my soccer clinics, and I make sure that they know that if a kid like me can make it then they have opportunities. I think I'm more interested in the grassroots level of football in Australia and not playing there."
About joining the Red Bulls, Cahill said:
"I think throughout my whole career, I've been very loyal to the football clubs I've played for. I started off at Millwall and left and went to Everton for a fantastic 8 years, probably one of the most emotional moves I've ever made. When I had the phone call that I had the opportunity to play for the Red Bulls, I knew in my heart that if I ever left Everton I would never play for another Premier League team out of respect for the fans, the chairman and the manager. I've achieved a hell of a lot in my career, but I also feel that this is a big move for me. I know a lot of people might think otherwise, but I'm 32 years old. I respect MLS, I'm coming here at a good age, I'm fit and I'm ready for a new challenge. Something that's very special for not only me but also for my family. I'm going to be playing with one of the biggest superstars on the planet, and that's Thierry Henry. I think for me I have to say the vision, as well as the people from the MLS and the Red Bulls, to try and make this a good club on and off the park and create pathways and opportunities for kids who strive to be footballers. For myself, very simple beginnings, nothing special. I work hard, I give everything and one thing I'm going to do for the Red Bulls is put my heart and soul into it."
Cahill said that he is in match form and he is expected to make his New York debut at Red Bull Arena at 7 p.m. on Tuesday against EPL side Tottenham Hotspur in the Barclays New York Cup.
To see Cahill's press conference, click here.
The New York Red Bulls announced the signing of former Everton midfielder Tim Cahill as their third Designated Player on Thursday. Cahill was acquired through a transfer fee to Everton. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Cahill will be added to the Red Bulls' roster as soon as he receives his visa and transfer certificate. An official press conference introducing Cahill to the media will be held on Monday.
Red Bulls general manager Erik Soler said about Cahill, "We are absolutely thrilled to bring in a player of Tim's caliber to the Red Bulls. He is the technical, physical presence we have been looking to add in our team and he brings a wealth of experience to our club having played in some of the highest levels of international soccer. Tim is a proven leader both on and off the field and we believe that he can help us immediately in our quest to win the MLS Cup this season."
Cahill was also thrilled about joining New York, saying, "I am very happy to start a new chapter of my career with the New York Red Bulls. As we have seen over the past few years, MLS has developed into a very competitive league with many talented players. I am impressed with what the Red Bulls are trying to accomplish in MLS and within American soccer and I am looking forward to this new challenge. I will do everything I can to help bring New York its first MLS Cup."
Cahill also was gracious about leaving his old club.
"I also want to thank everyone at Everton, from the club to tremendous supporters. It has been a privilege to be an Everton player for the past eight years and it was a very difficult decision to leave. I will always support Everton and I wish the club the best of luck in the future."
Cahill, 32, scored 68 goals in eight seasons with Everton. Before joining Everton, Cahill scored 56 times in 249 matches for Milwall. The Australian international has also scored 24 goals in 55 matches for his national team.
Cahill was in training at the Red Bulls facility at Montclair State University on Thursday. The team has not indicated what match they think he will make his debut in.
"Talking about Tim Cahill, he’s going to be great," Henry said ahead of the MLS All-Star Game on Wednesday. "We’re going to have to wait for him to go through the medical. He’s going to be a great asset for us and also for the league.
"If you saw the guy play the way he plays, I love the commitment and I always loved his commitment," he added. "He’s great in the box, his headers are unbelievable. He fights back to the net and his football IQ is great also. Hopefully that can be a plus for us."
Cahill, 32, has played for Everton in the Premier League since the 2004-05 season. He had 56 goals and 29 assists for Everton and has 107 goals and 66 assists in a professional career that began in 1997-98.
Cahill, 32, made 278 appearances and scored 68 goals for the Toffees since arriving from Milwall in 2004. The Australian international has scored 24 goals for his country in 55 appearances. Cahill had two years remaining on his contract with Everton.
The deal for Cahill will be complete once he agrees to terms on a contract and passes a physical. Cahill is set to become the team's third Designated Player, Thierry Henry and Rafael Marquez are the others.
The Red Bulls released a statement in which they did not confirm the transaction. It read:
"We are aware of Everton’s statement regarding midfielder Tim Cahill and our club. However, we have no comment at this time regarding him or any other non-New York player."
The Red Bulls have made two other recent moves recently, trading for LA Galaxy goalkeeper Bill Gaudette and Vancouver Whitecaps striker Sebastien Le Toux. Both players have paid immediate dividends for New York. Le Toux has one goal and one assist in three matches while Gaudette has recorded two clean sheets and is 2-0-1 in three matches.
Due to the timing of the trade, Le Toux will be at training for the Red Bulls on Saturday and available to play in Sunday's match against the Seattle Sounders.
"Sebastien is one of the premier attacking players in the League and someone who we have admired for a long time. He will be able to play a number of different positions and will be an important piece for us as we challenge for the MLS Cup this year," said Red Bulls General Manager and Sporting Director Erik Soler. "We also want to wish Dane the best of luck in Vancouver. He has been a great player for our club and it was a difficult decision to trade someone of his quality."
Le Toux has scored four goals and an assist for the Whitecaps this season in 19 matches (18 starts). The former Philadelphia Union captain has scored 30 goals and has 24 assists in his 109 MLS match career. Richards has been underperforming for New York this season. He has just one goal and two assists in 17 matches. Richards has only scored on 5.9 percent of his shots in 2012 (his career average is 12.1 percent). Le Toux has scored on 19 percent of his shots this season and 13.7 percent of his career.
The New York Red Bulls announced today that they have acquired goalkeeper Bill Gaudette from the L.A. Galaxy in exchange for New York’s natural 2014 second round MLS Supplemental Draft pick. Gaudette, 30, joined the team for the 2012 season. He appeared in three matches for the Galaxy, posting a record of 0-2-1 and a 1.33 goals against average. Gaudette came to Los Angeles after a one-year stint with the Montreal Impact of the North American Soccer League in 2011. He made nine appearances for the Canadian club.
"Bill is an experienced goalkeeper in American soccer and MLS," said Red Bulls General Manager and Sporting Director Erik Soler. "He will provide quality competition and guidance for our two young goalkeepers and we are excited to bring him to New York."
Rookie Ryan Meara, from Fordham, has played every minute in goal for the Red Bulls this season. Meara is fourth in the MLS with 59 saves and many consider him to be a candidate for MLS Rookie Of The Year. Meara is surrendering 1.50 goals per game with a save percentage of 66 percent.
It is unknown at this point if Gaudette will take any of Meara's playing time. It could mean reserve goalkeeper Jeremy Vuolo is in jeopardy of losing his roster spot.
The New York Red Bulls landed two players in the 2012 MLS All-Star First XI. During halftime of the ESPN MLS Game of the Week between the LA Galaxy and the Chicago Fire on Sunday, the results of the fan vote for the MLS All-Star starters were revealed.
Red Bulls striker Thierry Henry and defender Heath Pearce were selected to the First XI to play against English Premier League power Chelsea in the 2012 MLS All-Star Game on July 25 at PPL Park. This will be Henry's second All-Star appearance after previously making the squad last season. Pearce will be making his third All-Star appearance.
Here's the complete MLS First-XI:
Forwards: Thierry Henry (New York Red Bulls), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
Six members of the New York Red Bulls are on the ballot for the 2012 MLS All-Star Game. The MLS All-Stars will take on UEFA Champions League winner Chelsea FC on July 25 at PPL Park, home of the Philadelphia Union.
The Red Bulls who are on the ballot are goalkeeper Ryan Meara, defender Heath Pearce, forwards Kenny Cooper and Thierry Henry and midfielders Joel Lindpere and Dane Richards. The All-Star First 11 is chosen by fan voting, and the final roster will be rounded out by Union head coach Peter Nowak, who will lead the team against Chelsea.
Cooper is tied with Chris Wondolowski of the San Jose Earthquakes for the MLS lead with 11 goals. Henry has nine despite playing in only nine matches thus far this season.
Meara, a rookie from Fordham University, is third in the league with 48 saves. He is tied for fifth in the league among regular goalkeepers with a 72 percent save percentage.
The MLS Players Union released the data on MLS player salaries on Friday and we found out that New York Red Bulls striker Thierry Henry is now the highest paid player in MLS. Henry surpassed David Beckham of the LA Galaxy, who apparently took a $2.5 million pay cut to stay with the Galaxy. Henry, who is making $5.6 million, technically took a pay cut as well (of four cents). Rafa Marquez at $4.6 million also passed Beckham, who will make $4 million in 2012.
Here's what the Red Bulls team is making in 2012 in base and guaranteed salary:
|Player Name||Base Salary ($)||Guaranteed Compensation ($)|
|Jan Gunnar Solli||185,000.00||185,000.00|
For the way Ryan Meara has played in net this season, he's an insane bargain for the Red Bulls and costs less than his backup Jeremy Vuolo. The same could be said for forward Kenny Cooper who is tied for the MLS goal lead with 11 tallies. If you are wondering how much former Red Bull Juan Agudelo is set to make this season, it's only $100,000.
Tainio has only played in three matches and 180 total minutes this season for New York after starting all 28 matches he appeared in last season. Tainio had only recently come back to the training ground for drills. The team did not specify what the setback was for Tainio.
In addition to the Tainio news, Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe said that Jan Gunnar Solli will miss the next two matches with a thigh injury. Willman Conde and Thierry Henry are still ruled out for the Montreal match this Saturday but both could possibly return to the lineup against Chivas USA next Wednesday.
New York Red Bulls star Thierry Henry may miss a month of the MLS season after suffering a hamstring injury Saturday during the team’s 1-0 victory over the New England Revolution.
“It’s quite a big hamstring [injury], huge one,” Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe told reporters during his postgame press conference. “Normally you say three to four weeks.
“The way he has started as a goalscorer and [with] assists, it’s a huge loss for us,” said Backe, “both on and off the pitch.”
Henry scored the only goal in Saturday’s victory over New England. Moments later he went down while sprinting up the pitch and had to be helped off dragging his injured leg.
The Red Bulls are 4-3-1, 13 points, third in the Eastern Conference. Henry has been involved in 14 of New York’s 18 goals this season. He leads MLS with nine goals, and has added five assists.
New York Red Bulls defender Rafael Marquez was suspended on Thursday by MLS' disciplinary committee for three games following his actions against Shea Salinas of the San Jose Earthquakes in last week's match.
Here's how the league characterized Marquez's actions:
tackled, fell on and kicked his opponent in the 42nd minute of the April 14 match against the San Jose Earthquakes and his actions were viewed as violent conduct that demonstrated blatant disregard for the safety of his opponent.
See the video of the incident, which resulted in Salinas having his collarbone broken, below:
Marquez will begin to serve his suspension immediately and will miss New York's matches against D.C. United (Apr. 22), New England Revolution (April 28) and LA Galaxy (May 5). Marquez was also fined an undisclosed amount of money.
The Mexican international was only recently returning from a three-game suspension he received at the end of last season. Marquez had picked up the match ball in a playoff match against the Galaxy and tossed it at Landon Donovan which caused a scuffle at midfield.
The timing could not be worse for the Red Bulls and Marquez. The brand has been promoting the team in the New York area recently with 300,00 cans of Red Bull with the image of striker Thierry Henry on them. The expansion of this promotion to Western states is set to begin in May (when Marquez will just be coming off his second suspension in six months). Marquez's image is to appear on 1.3 million cans in those states (via Wall Street Journal).
After showing uneven effort for New York after playing well for Mexico, Marquez ripped teammates for their play last season during a slump. This was supposed to be a redemption year for Marquez. The Red Bulls were clearly going to allow him to be a face of the club with the Red Bull cans and events such as lighting the Empire State Building with Red Bulls colors.
Instead of redemption, he has found himself in trouble with the league once again, something which has happened far too often since he was signed in 2010.
New York Red Bulls defender Wilman Conde could be sidelined for up to a month with an aggravation of the groin pull which has kept him out of three of the first five matches of the 2012 MLS season (via Red Bulls).
The latest setback for Conde, who missed 10 months due to an ankle injury last season, occurred during Thursday's scrimmage at Red Bull Arena ahead of Saturday's match against the San Jose Earthquakes.
Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe said about Conde's injury:
"It's not good," Backe told reporters following Thursday's training session. "Perhaps we should have expected it, because being out 10 months, no preseason, typical for a guy his age to pick up hamstrings, thighs, groins. I'm a little bit afraid that it will keep going like this the rest of the season."
As the Red Bulls have undoubtedly been looking for a striker in the transfer market to replace Luke Rodgers whose visa was denied, finding a defender at the end of the current window (April 15) seems highly unlikely.
The Colombian center back has one assist in two matches this season.
Henry, who won the MLS Player of the Month Award for March, scored two goals and added an assist as the Red Bulls beat the Columbus Crew 4-1 at Crew Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The 34-year old set up a Kenny Cooper score in the third minute, then added goals of his own in the 40th and 90th minutes. Henry's latter goal gave the Red Bulls their third straight win by at least three goals, making them the first team in MLS history to accomplish that feat.
Henry has netted a league-leading seven goals through five games and is also second in the MLS in assists with four. He has accounted for 11 of New York's league-leading 14 goals during the team's 3-2-0 start.
Thierry Henry has won the MLS Player of the Week award for the second week running. There was no surprise this week when MLS announced that Henry had won the award. Henry not only played better than other players during the week, he outdid his performance from last week with his first career MLS hat trick.
Henry also had an assist in New York's 5-2 comeback win over the expansion Montreal Impact. Henry struck first in the match in the 28th minute with a headed goal between two defenders in the penalty area. He also scored in the 56th (a quick turn and fire goal near the top of the area) and 89th minutes (a tap in on a rebound). His wonderful flicked assist on Mehdi Ballouchy's goal was in the 72nd minute.
See full match highlights below:
"After going through the entire immigration and appeals process, Luke's P-1 Visa application has unfortunately been denied by the U.S. government for now. We have spoken with Luke about potential options and have mutually decided that it would be in all parties' best interests to terminate his current MLS contract so he could play elsewhere. However, we will also continue to track his progress this year while working with immigration officials with the goal that he could join the Red Bulls sometime in the future."
Rodgers scored 10 goals in 25 games for New York in 2011.
The visa issues apparently stemmed from Rodgers' criminal record. Rodgers has always been a fairly controversial figure, and the controversy that seems to surround him means the Red Bulls will now have to move on without him.
The New York Red Bulls are growing weary of waiting for striker Luke Rodgers' visa to be approved so the Englishmen can get back to work up top for New York. Due to Rodgers' criminal record in England, his visa has been held up by the U.S. government.
Now that Juan Agudelo is also out for weeks due to an injury picked up while he was with the U.S. U-23 team, the Red Bulls are even more inclined to use some of their allocation money before the transfer window closes in mid-April.
General manager Erik Solér said:
"The window closes on April 15 so we have to do something before that if we haven't gotten a final approval for him by then," Red Bulls general manager Erik Solér told MLSsoccer.com after Wednesday's practice. "We will still continue to work on him [after that date], but we will have to look for a replacement because Juan [Agudelo] is probably out a few more weeks [with a torn meniscus]." (via MLS Soccer)
Solér said that the club has looked both within the league and internationally but also said that finding the quality of Rodgers will likely only be found overseas.
Rodgers scored 9 goals in 23 MLS matches for New York last season.
During Sunday's 4-1 win over the Colorado Rapids, Henry scored two goals and assisted on another goal. Henry stunned Colorado with a goal just three minutes into the match, assisted on Kenny Cooper's goal three minutes later and scored his second goal shortly after halftime to give the Red Bulls a 3-0 lead. The Red Bulls' captain now has two goals and two assists in three matches in 2012.
Here's Henry's brace during yesterday's match:
Henry led New York and was third in MLS in 2011 with 14 goals. Since he joined the Red Bulls in the latter half of 2010, Henry has scored 18 goals and dished out nine assists in 40 games.
The New York Red Bulls received news today regarding forward Juan Agudelo that they had been fearing. Agudelo will undergo surgery today to repair a torn medial meniscus in his left knee, an injury he suffered recently while with the United States Under-23 Men’s National Team participating in the 2012 CONCACAF Men’s Qualifying Tournament.
Agudelo, 19, was hurt during a 6-0 United States victory over Cuba.
Agudelo played one game for the Red Bulls this season, starting and playing the full 90 minutes in a season-opening loss to FC Dallas. He then departed for internatonal duty.
The surgery was to be performed by Dr. Riley Williams at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. Agudelo could be sidelined for up to six weeks.
Agudelo played in 27 games for the Red Bulls in 2011, with 12 starts. He finished the season with six goals and two assists.
The Red Bulls return to action on Saturday, March 31 when they host the expansion Montreal Impact at 4 p.m. ET (TV: MSG).
The New York Red Bulls selected goalkeeper and Fordham University product Ryan Meara in the second round of the 2012 MLS SuperDraft with the 31st overall pick today at the Kansas City Convention Center in Kansas City, MO.
Earlier in the day, the Red Bulls acquired 2008 MLS Best XI forward Kenny Cooper from the Portland Timbers for a 2013 MLS SuperDraft First Round pick and allocation money.
The 6-foot-4 goalkeeper played four years of college at Fordham University, registering 31 shutouts in 74 appearances. Meara collected a number of accolades in his final season as he was named the 2011 Atlantic 10 Defensive Player of the Year and added to the All-Atlantic 10 Conference First Team. He also finished 11th overall in NCAA Division I play in goals against average (0.65).
“We think he’s the best goalkeeper in the college system. He’s big, he’s strong, we need a goalie, and he’s from New York,” said Red Bulls Sporting Director Erik Soler. “Every factor that we looked at was there, and he was the player we wanted most from the draft simply because we needed a goalkeeper.”
Born in Yonkers and raised in Crestwood, the New York native played his high school days at Fordham Prep. In 2010 he was named Premier Development League Goalkeeper of the Year while playing for Ironbound Express.
The New York Red Bulls added some leadership and stability to their back line Thursday, signing Swedish defender Markus Holgersson. The 26-year-old will join the team as soon as he receives P-1 via approval and passes a physical and the MLS gains receipt of his International Transfer Certificate, says the Red Bulls official press release.
"Over the offseason, one of our priorities was to add more physical players," said Red Bulls General Manager and Sporting Director Erik Soler," and Markus certainly fits that bill. We are excited that he has decided to join New York."
Since 2009, Holgersson made 80 appearances with Swedish Allsvenskan side where he tallied five goals and last year helped the team become the first Swedish club to win the League, Super Cup and Swedish Cup titles in the same year.
Venezuelan goalkeeper Renny Vega said New York has called him.
Tim Ream reportedly has an offer from EPL side Bolton.
The New York Red Bulls 2012 MLS schedule was announced on Thursday.
New York Red Bulls coach Hans Backe says Markus Holgersson will be joining the team.
Red Bulls GM Erik Soler discussed the team's roster plans today on a conference call.
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