The Red Bulls finally locked down a point in MLS, drawing with Sporting Kansas City last weekend. A 2-2 final saw a Red Bulls comeback fall short as 16 year old Gianluca Busio broke Red Bull hearts with his equaliser in the 88th minute.
Daniel Royer slotted home after rounding the keeper in the 52nd minute to level the score. A brilliant ball by Kaku found the head of youngster Brian White to give the Red Bulls the lead in the 75th, but the final three minutes saw a collapse of Chris Armas’ side.
An immature move by Kaku saw the midfielder blast the ball into the stands just feet from the crowd, sparking outrage amongst Sporting fans and players alike. Kaku was given a red card and could face serious disciplinary action from MLS.
Many Red Bull fans took to social media to voice their disgust over the issue, calling for Kaku to be suspended for multiple matches, fined, and in some cases, dropped from the team. It was an irrational move by Kaku, and any suspension of less than four matches would be surprising.
Shifting focus to this weeks opponent, the Red Bulls travel to New England to take on the Revolution. Much like the Red Bulls, Brad Friedel’s Revolution are struggling to get off the mark this season, sitting bottom of the east with just four points.
One of the many I-95 derbies, Red Bulls vs. New England always has a bit of a different feel to it. The series was split last season, with both teams winning on their home ground. Gillette Stadium has not exactly been a fortress for the team this season, as they have lost three of their four home matches.
This is troubling since New England was so strong at home last season. It was the only reason the team did not finish at the bottom of the Easter Conference. If they want to improve on last seasons point total, they need to start winning their home matches.
Summer signing Carles Gil has been great for the team since joining from Deportivo La Coruna. His opening day goal secured a point for the Revolution, while his brace was not enough to get past Toronto in a 3-2 loss.
The 26 year old Spaniard has played every minute this season and will continue to feature in the Revolution attack. Linking up with Juan Caicedo and Cristian Penilla up top, the attack for New England has the potential to score in bunches.
For the Red Bulls, they have attacking concerns of their own. Armas decided to play Cristhian Casseres Jr. in a more advanced role against Sporting, and it paid off. The 19 year old recorded his first assist of the season, setting up Royer in the second half.
With Kaku out indefinitely and Alex Muyl still day to day, Casseres is likely to see a second successive start in the attacking role. Since Kaku played wide right last match, the logical replacement would be Andreas Ivan. His minutes have been severely limited since his strong start to the season, so hopefully Armas gives him minutes moving forward.
Armas could also choose to go with Brian White, who made an instant impact when coming off the bench against Sporting KC. White and Bradley Wright-Phillips could play up top together with Casseres sitting just behind them.
Whoever starts up top, supporters will be hoping for a continued upswing in both goals and overall performance from the team. A win in New England would be a great boost for the squad following their performance against Sporting.
This is the final away match before the Red Bulls head home for a three match home stretch, so three points would be a great building block in the standings. New England has a tendency to let up first half goals, so the Red Bulls need to grab an early goal to set the tone.
Royer is going to be the key man in this one. He often scores in bunches, so expect him to carry his form into New England. Both teams are more than capable going forward, so a solid Saturday night derby is on the cards.