The New York Red Bulls have survived the International Break. They will have Aaron Long, Michael Murillo, Kemar Lawrence and Kaku returning as they will face a big road test as they head to SeatGeek Stadium and take on the Chicago Fire.
For a very long time the New York Red Bulls have had this match up become a fight for points, either at Red Bull Arena, or away within the confines of SeatGeek Stadium where this side continues to find a way to get on the Red Bulls and the negative side of the record.
“I mean they’re just a team, I think, that knows as well and that we know well.” said Alex Muyl “It’s never easy when you play against a team that you kind of have some history and you understand the way each other want to play and it makes it more difficult.
“I think, going to their place first this year is a good opportunity for us to hopefully steal three points at their place and then set it up for a return match.”
Even though the Red Bulls lost to this Chicago Fire side at home first last season, they can say that this group has a current positive streak at the Fire House. The Red Bulls are currently on a four game unbeaten streak in league play, but five unbeaten in all competitions, including the playoffs back in 2017 with that four goal clean sheet win in the Wild Card Game.
But since the season got underway, the Fire added another piece to their attack as they brought over C.J. Sapong from the Philadelphia Union, as he has been a thorn in the side of the Red Bulls, for the last several years.
“Yeah, CJ’s a tough player. When he was with Philly, he caused us some problems.” said Aaron Long “We know he’s big, strong, fast and he can score goals in the air.
“He’s a very good player and with Nikolić running in behind, it’s a tough combo to deal with on a day. We don’t know their exact line up yet. But CJ is going to cause problems surely so we got to be physical and aggressive with them.”
Kemar Lawrence had a very long road to get back into full fitness, while he had 45 minutes in the second half of their CONCACAF Champions League 1st leg at Club Atletico Pantoja, Lawrence was able to play the full ninety minutes with Jamaica in their Nations League match up against the Cayman Islands.
“Yeah, it’s funny because you know your body, what you’re feeling but you’re coaching staff and your medical staff see different players experience different things in different ways and people might feel good, and then they come back and then oh, they’re injured.” said Lawrence “They see that and then they look at you coming back and you’re really valuable to the team so they don’t want that same thing that happened to you.
“Sometimes it’s great to be a bit more cautious. Sometimes that’s the right step and I feel like even doing that for the game that I was trying to play before I went it went away on the break. It was the right move because I play 90 minutes for Jamaica now. I feel really good coming on a lot of fitness in there and everything.”
The boys are back in business and looks like they are at full strength. The international break is over and the club, can concentrate on their next opponents, which are the Chicago Fire. It should be an interesting matchup in the early afternoon.