The oldest and the first derby match in Major League Soccer history will be renewed this coming Wednesday night. The battle lines will be drawn once again inside our Nation’s Capital as these two original sides come together and fight for the full three points.
The New York Red Bulls will travel to face DC United in their first edition of the 2018 chapter of this long and history rivalry between these two sides and new head coach Chris Armas is ready for the challenge.
“Will be ready, we will be ready and keep our momentum going. Now being in the second half of the season that every game is important and facing DC we know that these games will be very difficult.” said Armas.
“I was a part of this league when it got started in 1996 when the classic battles were taking place and playing for the LA Glaxy, Chicago Fire and now with the red Bulls. They have always been a difficult opponent when they were playing in RFK.
Will it be different? Yes. It’s synonymous when you talk about RFK Stadium and DC United where the classic battle were. You will expect a packed house at Audi Field and those fans have deserved that new place.”
But for the first time down in our Nation’s Capital, this fight will be played somewhere else and in a different part of the district as DC United opened their brand new stadium in Audi Field just two blocks away from the home of the Washington Nationals.
Just when Red Bull Arena changed the landscape of this rivalry back in 2010, Audi Field will do the same and it will complete the change when both sides will now play this huge rivalry at stadiums that are meant for the game in the United States.
Tim Parker the Hicksville, New York Native will be playing in his first DC/NY Rivalry match and while you would think he has watched some of these games before becoming a professional, he is well aware of what’s at stake in our Nation’s Capital.
“To be honest I didn’t watch many of them as a kid, but I know that it’s the biggest rivalry for the Red Bulls. This is the one that all the fans will be watching very heavily on and the players have talked about it the most so I can’t wait to be a part of it.” said Parker.
DC opened Audi Field with a big win against the Vancouver Whitecaps and Wayne Rooney made his DC United debut coming off the bench on July 14th. So seeing what a new stadium means for the Capital Club and the relief for the fans, you can tell this will be a huge match up.
But for someone who has already seen his share of new derby’s playing in MLS Alejandro Romero Gamerra has been involved with matches against New England, NYCFC and Philadelphia up and down I-95. But this is the grandest of them all.
“They haven’t said anything differently, this is another team that we are getting ready for, they play differently but we will be prepared for this big match up. Now that they have Wayne Rooney, they will be better and the goal is to get three points.” said Kaku.
“I’ve only see him play watching on TV, but the trajectory of his career has been remarkable and it’s going to be a pleasure to face him and it’s also great to see him come over to this league.”
On injury news Aaron Long has recovered from his stomach issues after being subbed out of the match on Saturday by Aurelien Collin. He should be ready to go and play in the starting eleven this coming Saturday.
But now is the time to see this rivalry come back into play and another new setting has been built as the days of RFK are no more for DC United. This rivalry has changed and for the better now that Audi Field has been built and ready to go.