The New York Red Bulls square off against San Jose Earthquakes tonight at Stanford Stadium in Palo Alto, California. It's a rare home game away from Buck Shaw Stadium for the Earthquakes, and they expect a crowd of 40,000+. The match will be broadcast live, nationally on ESPN2. It's the final game of the Red Bulls' 4-game road trip, which was only broken up on Tuesday by the US Open Cup match against FC New York. Last season the Red Bulls were stung 4-0 at Buck Shaw on Luke Sassano Homecoming Night but managed a 1-0 playoff victory there, before famously throwing it all away in the return leg at Red Bull Arena.
Dax McCarty gets his first start in a New York shirt since his well-publicized trade for Dwayne De Rosario. Elsewhere, the big surprise is the absence of Thierry Henry due to flu. Mehdi Ballouchy (yikes) joins Juan Agudelo up top. Carlos Mendes has been paired with Tim Ream in Rafael Márquez's absence. Luke Rodgers, still nursing a foot injury, is not in the squad for tonight's game but could return next week. In goal, Bouna Coundoul gets nod over Greg Sutton, despite having given up a bad goal in Chicago last Sunday.
Red Bulls: Bouna Coudoul; Roy Miller, Tim Ream, Carlos Mendes, Jan Gunnar Solli, Joel Lindpere, Dax McCarty, Teemu Tainio, Dane Richards, Mehdi Ballouchy, Juan Agudelo
Bench: Greg Sutton, Mike Jones, John Rooney, Austin Da Luz, Corey Hertzog, Stephen Keel
Earthquakes: Jon Busch, Steven Beitashour, Jason Hernandez, Bobby Burling, Ramiro Corrales, Chris Wondolowski, Brad Ring, Khari Stephenson, Ryan Johnson, Simon Dawkins, Steven Lenhart
Bench: Andrew Weber, Anthony Ampaipitakwong, Sam Cronin, Joey Gjertsen, Chris Leitch, Ellis McLoughlin, Scott Sealy
God help us all!