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Are the Red Bulls relyling too much on their young players

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Bringing back Josh Sims was a plus, but is it enough for an improved 2020 season

MLS: D.C. United at New York Red Bulls
Chris Armas preparing the boys for a new season
Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

When the end of the 2019 season came at the hands of the Philadelphia Union in the playoffs, Sporting director Denis Hamlet decreed that the club has the necessary funds to go out and spend money on bringing in the players they need to upgrade the squad.

Yet what we have seen already in this winter transfer window and current offseason is that the big signings have been either academy players or USL players signing to first-team contracts. But while it’s always a strong move to give those young players a chance to grow and get their fair shot at the big time, you wonder if the front office might be losing the plot.

In a recent discussion with the MLS Extra Time crew, ESPN Soccer Analyst and former New England Revolution striker Tayler Twellman showed his displeasure on the current moves of the Red Bulls offseason.

“Aye, New York Red Bulls, you doing anything? Are you doing anything, Is [head coach] Chris Armas even alive.” said Twellman “I am stunned that this is where they [RBNY] are. I am stunned they haven’t signed anyone for Chris Armas to use.

“You can’t replace them [players who left] with USL II players, as good as John Wolyniec and that system and that club’s franchise and what they’ve done.

I’m sorry, New York Red Bulls, for me, the crickets that I’ve heard from you guys, that is as disheartening as anything that’s happened in this off-season.”

Now we have to be fair that the Red Bulls were looking for talent elsewhere in the world, Charles Bohem reported that the club was looking to purchase Leonardo da Silva Lopes from Hull. Unfortunately, the English based club rejected their offer, which meant they had to look elsewhere.

Now when it comes to bringing up prospects or developing young talent for the future of the club, I am in the firm belief that the Red Bulls are doing the right thing with their USL Championship side.

Just like the New York Yankees and the New York Rangers who have developed their young, talented players and have them ready to go for the big stage in their respective Major Leagues.

But at the same time, you need those free agents or those superstars that have dominated within the leagues of Europe and international football to help accelerate those young talented players like what Bradley Wright-Phillips did.

While Josh Sims has returned on a six-month loan [and possibly more] from Southampton, the midfield has improved, but who will be that impactful player that will put the Red Bull into that cup clinching moment. Is there a worry that after bringing up & selling Tyler Adams and now signing John Tolken that the pipeline, might be a bit dry?

While you see clubs like D.C. United and the Los Angeles Galaxy bringing in great players to shore up their situations, the Red Bulls are bringing in their own who will become good players one day, yet the rumblings from the supporters are very loud.

If there is a plan for what’s left in the winter transfer window, let’s hope they can start to bring in some quality during the summer window. We all hope that they can get a fast start once we get to March 1st.