If past performance is the best indicator of future performance then the Red Bulls look pretty good for their Wednesday match-up with FC Dallas in Dallas.
Not that it's going to be easy. FC Dallas, points-wise, is better than every team in the East. They're a pretty good home team, posting a 9-5-3 record at home, which is going to be especially rough on the road-averse Red Bulls.
But the Red Bulls do hold some interesting advantages over Dallas.First, the obvious. The Red Bulls posted a 1-0-1 record against Dallas this season, drawing a game at home with the equalizer coming off the foot of Thierry Henry five minutes after Dane Richards was sent off in the 80th minute. The road win, for those that don't remember, practically turned the season around.
In fact, that road win was the Red Bulls third in their last four games at Pizza Hut Park, with the outlier being a draw.
And it isn't just the Red Bulls that Dallas has been having trouble with lately. The team is 4-7-1 in September and October. The Red Bulls are 3-1-1 in their last five.
Personnel-wise David Ferreira, last year's MLS MVP likely isn't in the line-up, after being out since April with a broken ankle.
So things look good for the Red Bulls, even with Luke Rodgers out. Without the diminutive Englishman, the Red Bulls were 0-3-7, so penciling the Bulls into the Conference Semifinal round isn't all-but-assured, despite what the front office may think. But they look good. Significantly better than they did even in September.