Welcome to the Red Bulls Paper Revue presented by Once a Metro.
There’s a four-member crew of small dogs that hangs out together in my neighborhood. I assume their owners are friends. Whenever I tromp past, they all sprint to the wood fence, glaring through the chain-link mesh and barking their little heads off. I always murmur to myself, “The gang’s all here.”
Here’s this week’s top story.
It’s forever a special day and a big event whenever Bernd Eibler speaks with his hometown newspaper. The Red Bulls assistant coach caught up with BVZ about the friendly against Barcelona. He had… a great time!
“Those were moments that you don’t experience every day,” said Eibler. “Barca trained with us and I also watched the training on Friday. We wanted to put overstatements in our idea of football, be good in our principles against the ball and we managed that against an absolutely top team.”
He was able to have “a short conversation” with Xavi, which was “special.” There was also a meeting with some guy named Thierry Henry in the dressing room, which was “very special.” Everyone loves friendlies.
Gerhard Struber certainly made some headlines overseas, with quite a few publications noting the Red Bulls’ recent results and ensuing comments.
“Bitter for Struber,” says Sky Sports.
“Struber once again conceded five goals,” Der Standard expressed, laying blame at the manager’s feet.
“Struber’s RB New York again conceded five goals,” intoned Krone.
Coaching in Major League Soccer can be a double-edged sword. Since nobody in Europe or South America respects the competition, a manager’s performances, both good and bad, are given little weight. There is no issue returning overseas after a bad run of form, as demonstrated by the conga line of imported coaches who returned to a different continent.
If Struber is starting to gain some media traction for the team’s recent minor dip, that’s a bit of a different issue. By nature, humans read headlines and little else, a product of our short-attention-span world. While the Austrian is unlikely to develop any form of reputation based on what a few publications write, he may have some incentive to at least plan an explanation for his tenure in order to push back against these brief above-the-byline descriptions.
The door is never shut on the national team. With the 2022 World Cup looming, Patryk Klimala could certainly work his way back into the picture for Poland. At least, that’s what the manager says.
“Five would go [to the World Cup],” shared Poland boss Czesław Michniewicz. “[They are] Robert Lewandowski, Adam Buksa, Karol Świderski, Arek Milik and Krzysiek Piątek. They haven’t played the league yet and we’ll see. We also take into account others. There is Dawid Kownacki, who plays and shoots for Fortuna Duesseldorf. There is Patryk Klimala in MLS and a few others.”
The Red Bulls striker has never appeared for the senior national team. His experience is limited to various youth sides, where he competed under Michniewicz. A goal here and a finish there, perhaps Klimala is back in the game.
In the first leg of the third round of UEFA Europa Conference League qualifying, Breiðablik fell to İstanbul Başakşehir by a 3-1 margin. Omar Sowe stayed on the bench. The away match in Turkey is on the 16th, which is a Thursday if you subscribe to the Gregorian calendar.
Who wants a reserve team these days?
AS Monaco certainly doesn’t. The Monégasques pulled the second squad out of the French pyramid and instead “will prioritize matches against elite European academies as well as senior, professional French sides.” Sporting director and former Red Bull something-or-other Paul Mitchell hopes “the new approach” will “continue to reinforce the impact” of the development pipeline.
Who will be leading this motley crew of prospects that recently reached the domestic U-19 final? Damien Perrinelle is the man for the job, of course. The former New York defender has spent the last two seasons as an assistant while also doing some liaising with sister club Cercle Brugge. He is tasked with “optimizing training time of young players and to confront them more easily with the requirements of professionalism.”
Things seem to be going well. “The players were invested,” said Perrinelle. “We felt they were itching to touch the ball again and have fun on the field. This good first calls for others, with in mind the main objective that we have to set ourselves within the club: to bring our young players closer to the demands of the high level.”
The club is competing in the highly prestigious Premier League International Cup alongside some of the continent and England’s best programs. This seems to be the way of the future, as quite a few sporting departments have begun shedding the traditional notions of reserve teams and instead seeking alternative means to bridge the gap between the youth and professional levels. While there are many different ways to develop talent, larger entities are embracing the pathway of academy to what I’m going to term academy-plus before making the decision of either first-team, assigning to a sister entity, or release.
Ashley Fletcher is still waiting for his helicopter out of Saig-…Watford. He was not in the match-day lineup for the Hornets’ opening fixture against Sheffield United, a 1-0 win. A suitor may have emerged, although there is some reluctance and hesitation in hopes of other parties becoming interested.
Based on descriptions of “extensive second-tier experience” and “available on loan,” sleuths have connected the 26-year-old striker to Rotherham United, which earned promotion to the Championship last season. “The lad has decided he wants to come,” said manager Paul Warne, describing a nameless entity. “I think he possibly spoke to a couple of the lads in the dressing room here, which always helps. We’re trying to do it. Hopefully we get to a point where everybody’s happy: the player, his agent, and both clubs… It comes down to what the parent club wants back for their player.”
I mean, maybe it’s not Ashley Fletcher, but it could be Ashley Fletcher. And why wouldn’t you want to go to Rotherham? I’m sure there are plenty of things to do in South Yorkshire.
The move of Fábio Gomes to Vasco da Gama is official, and he is happy. I mean, the man is excited to be in Rio de Janeiro. The Série B side has been pursuing him for multiple windows when most of us cannot even get a response to our texts.
“I’ve had a lot of proposals,” said Fábby-Doo. “When I heard about Vasco, I didn’t think twice. When I was at NY Red Bull they came after me and I think if I stayed, [then] I could go to Vasco. When the news came that Vasco wanted, I didn’t think twice.”
I’m not quite sure what he’s implying. Is the idea that the Red Bulls would have exercised the purchase option on his loan from Oeste, then flipped him to Vasco da Gama? Is there some context I’m sorely missing?
Vasco kicks it into high gear next Saturday against Tombense. Mayhaps Fábsy-doodles will be in the line-up. Mayhaps he won’t.
2011 MLS SuperDraft selection Corey Hertzog is on the move.
After terminating his contract with Hartford Athletic of the USL Championship, the striker dropped down a level and joined reigning League One title-holders Union Omaha. He reunites with manager Jay Mims, who was an assistant coach during his college days at Pennsylvania State University. The new signing is praised for his “intelligent movement and nose for goal,” as well as his “contagious energy and competitiveness.”
Hertzog is the “second-highest goal-scorer in USL Championship history,” a fact of which I was previously unaware.
Former Red Bulls II attacker Deri Corfe landed in Scotland. The 24-year-old Englishman signed with Arbroath FC through June of 2023. The Red Lichties compete in the second-tier Championship and are seeking promotion after finishing second in the table last season.
One-time academy player Salvador Pliego is also on the move. The 21-year-old joined FK Kozara Gradiska of the First League of the Republika Srpska, which is the second tier in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The 6’6” defender was recently on the books of FC Weesen in Switzerland.
Don’t bother checking Wikipedia: Daniel Royer is still a free agent.
There was a rumor last month. The Austrian midfielder was connected to AIK Fotboll by the unimpeachable Allsvenskan Silly Instagram page. The Swedish club reportedly offered “a two-year contract.”
We continue our vigil for his eventual signing and debates over the appropriate color of smoke upon the final decision.
Here’s a joke that was submitted by Sigrid of Shamong.
“I haven’t retired. I just haven’t shown up to the office in 15 years.”
Thank you, Sigrid. You’re always Employee of the Month in my book.
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