It's the 7th inning, and Captain Dax is on the mound. 3 innings away from pitching a *don't say it*. Michael Kay is hushed, and the fans are silent. There's one rule: Just please don't say it.
In the fall of 2013, our beloved New York Red Bulls captured their first major trophy after going one point up in the table over Sporting Kansas City, raising the Supporters' Shield after conquering the Chicago Fire on a Sunday night in late October. And it was with that, MLS deemed RBNY as curse-free. Now two years later, the squad is at it again. Is anything different though?
As Graham Parker of ESPN puts it,
"There's a general sense these days that when the Red Bulls lose, it's because of footballing merits on the day, rather than the fatalistic sense of inevitably that used to follow this perennially underachieving team."
This is exactly what New York has been trying to fix since it garnered this reputation in 1996 when Nicola Caricola scored an own goal in the team's first home match.
So it is with that, we have great odds at securing yet another trophy, one in which some say may even be more valuable than the Cup. To this, I vote we do not throw all our eggs in one basket. Instead, just let RBNY do what they've being doing all season long: win.
A quick update on the Shield race, following last night: RBNY need one win to eliminate both LA/VAN. Need seven points to win Shield.
— Dan Dickinson (@GothamistDan) October 8, 2015
The last three opponents of New York's 2015 season are Toronto, Philadelphia, and Chicago. In 2014, RBNY faced Toronto in match 32 of the season as well, and won 3-1. In 2013, RBNY faced Chicago in the season finale with a stunning 5-2 victory, with Lloyd Sam scoring possibly the most important goal of the season, number three to give RBNY the Supporter's Shield. And as for Philadelphia in 2015, the two clubs are 1-1 in league play against each other, with each netting three goals.
Currently with two wins in a row, RBNY's longest unbeaten streak of the season is six games, five of which were wins from mid-July to mid-August of this year.
I believe in New York, and you should too.
(Editor's note: Signing off with your twitter handle is incredibly annoying. Don't follow Bobby on Twitter.)