The New York Red Bulls entered today tied on points with their former Eastern Conference rivals, the Houston Dynamo, and the way this played out, you would think it was a rehash of their playoff matches. The Red Bulls script played out going into halftime with a 1-0 lead, then everything broke apart. 4 goals for Houston in the second half while playing the Red Bulls out of the park. A yellow card for Mike Grella for taking a cleat to the ankle in the box, and a consolation goal just added to the despair.
Taking a Lead
For the second week in a row, the Red Bulls had a lead and failed to hold on. They were 4-0-0 before the Seattle match when scoring first. Again, so much for that.
2 weeks. 2 Penalty Kicks the Red Bulls should've gotten. 2 times a referee changed the outcome of the game by not calling what should've been called. Here's a screenshot of the foul on Grella.
It's pretty clear that Tyler Deric took him down. However, Mike Grella got a yellow for diving, and Deric got away with a tackle that could've broken Grella's leg/ankle/foot.
Playing a high pressure system requires your players to be well conditioned so they can sustain their energy in a 90 minute match. It's seems that the Red Bulls staff isn't doing a good enough job of maintaining player stamina. The 6 goals conceded in the last two games are clearly from defensive lapses, and most likely from a lack of energy. The team has two weeks off before their next MLS match. Let's hope the players actually get some rest.