The New York Red Bulls are back home for what will be the last game of their 2018 season if they don’t beat Columbus Crew by sufficient margin to win their 2018 MLS Eastern Conference Semifinal series.
On the bright side, “sufficient margin” is a win by two or more goals, and recently RBNY has been pretty good at winning by two or more goals at home.
But we all know that this RBNY team at home has been something special... so these are the frequencies of outcomes at RBA during 2018.— Refreshing autumnal breeze from 202 (@Viewfrom202) November 5, 2018
An astounding two-thirds of the time we've shut-out our opponent.
We were more likely to win 4-0 than lose at home pic.twitter.com/TCtdGFeRtq
Indeed, the benefit of having just completed the best-ever regular season in MLS history is that there is no shortage of fresh evidence to suggest RBNY is more than up to the task of overcoming the 1-0 deficit hanging over the team from the first leg of this playoff series.
On the less bright side is the memory that the last time RBNY came into the playoffs as the best team in MLS - back in 2015 - it was Gregg Berhalter’s Columbus Crew that bounced the Bulls out of the post-season. Berhalter seems to routinely plan well for the Red Bulls (the Crew had an uneven 2018, but still managed to take four points from two regular-season meetings with RBNY). The first-leg demonstrated that Columbus does its homework, knows RBNY’s tendencies, and will have a plan to exploit the predictable elements of the Red Bulls’ tactics.
But RBNY expects to be playing worthy opponents in the playoffs. And if winning in the playoffs comes down to winning at Red Bull Arena: the Red Bulls can’t reasonably ask for much more than the chance to keep moving forward in the post-season by winning games in front of their home crowd.
Per livesoccertv.com, here’s where to find the game if watching from the USA: