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Michelle Ackermann

Michelle Ackermann

Born in South Africa, soccer has always been a part of my life, and was pretty much ingrained in my genes. Journalism is my second love in life, and what better way to combine my two favorite things in life than to write about the one thing I am most passionate about. I follow the New York Red Bulls religiously, but have a deep passion for La Liga. This passion is part of the reason why I have moved to Barcelona to pursue my dream of becoming a sports broadcaster.


Chivas USA Gives RBNY a Reality Check

Written by on May 16, 2011 | 7 Comments »
Posted in Chivas USA, General, MLS, New York RB

Following a busy week for the New York Red Bulls, who made their way from a Montreal loss after their draw against the Galaxy last weekend, the team was happy to be back in Harrison in front of a home crowd. The first Sunday night game for this season brought attendance that far surpassed most expectations, as the weather certainly did not help matters, 16, 365 fans came out to watch the Red Bulls take on Chivas USA.

The game was delayed half an hour due to a power surge in the area, but when the whistle finally blew at around 7:30, the game brought more than expected by most RBNY fans. RBNY has found themselves on an amazing whirlwind; the team seemingly finding their respective spots amongst one another while giving the fans a show worth watching.

The power surge issue was soon outdone as the Chivas scored in the 6th minute, changing the entire game for RBNY. It was Chivas forward, Justin Braun, who would find the net twice more in the 31st and 56th minute, granting him a well deserved hat-trick, while simultaneously leaving the Red Bulls chasing to equalize during the entire match.
Thierry Henry was the first to equalize for RBNY in the 21st minute, while Dwayne De Rosario found the second equalizer in the 35th minute through a penalty kick. It would be De Rosario’s first goal for RBNY, and came to fruition on his 33rd birthday. It was that illusive 3rd goal that could not be found, with a goal from Rodgers disallowed due to being called offside. RBNY found themselves chasing after the ball in vain, as Chivas defense was solid. As Rodgers put it, “Chivas sat there, they didn’t move. They just sat there like a turtle” and that was enough for them to hold onto their lead.

Once again, the question of Rafa Marquez’s corner kicks left nothing to the imagination; fourteen corner kicks were granted to RBNY and none found the back of the net. During the post-game conference, Coach Hans Backe stated that “All the players need to act as one in the box”, and then RBNY should be able to capitalize on these opportunities. As for a replacement player to take corner kicks while Marquez will be away during the summer, while he will be playing for the Mexican National Team, Backe is looking at Teemo Tainio, who as Backe stated; “Tainio is a good distributor, he could be tried.”

Furthermore, Backe stated that the team played “too pretty, too sloppy. Conceding two goals on set plays is just too sloppy.” For Backe, this was the first game of the season where he found himself disappointed, stating that the team reacted too late, especially in the midfield. He vowed to forget this game as soon as possible, and bounce back on Saturday against Houston.

Despite the loss, Thierry Henry praised his team mates on finding Rodgers; “Everybody’s moving, everybody’s working. We find him (Rodgers) a lot in set pieces.” As for the question of corner kicks and Marquez not finding the net, Henry defended him by explaining that “Barcelona doesn’t score a lot off of setpieces. Is it a problem of winning or losing a game? I don’t think so.” I may not agree with his opinion, as I do not see the relevance of comparing MLS to La Liga, when other teams in the MLS seem to benefit from their corner kicks as seen last weekend against the Galaxy. All David Beckham needs is one corner kick, and he finds the net. Those are things to be cautious of if RBNY would like to raise the Cup at the end of the year.

Despite the first homeloss for the Red Bulls, the night was about the 24-year old striker from Chivas USA, Justin Braun who was signed in 2008. He was the top scorer for the Chivas in 2010, notching 9 goals and 3 assists, and after his hat-trick against RBNY, he is well under way to receiving the same title this season.

7 responses to “Chivas USA Gives RBNY a Reality Check”

  1. Soccerlogical says:

    Please don’t mention the NYRB game, I took them on a “double chance” in an accumulator… you know the rest. When is Sven’s chimp intern gonna realize that DeRo needs to play further up the pitch, Agudelo needs to start instead of Pillsbury Rodgers and “Captain Marquez” needs to concentrate on marshaling his defense as opposed to taking set pieces…

  2. Gus Keri says:


    I agree with you on Marquez. He needs to focus on defense. Giving him the the responsibilities of free kicks and corner kicks is too much for a defender even for someone in Marquez’s stature.
    This season the experienced defender commited much more blunders than his softmore partner, Tim Ream.

  3. Gus Keri says:


    Nice article.

    I thought the attendance number doesn’t reflect the true attendance. They may have sold more than 16,000 tickets but there were too many no shows.

    By the way, is it RBNY or NYRB?

  4. Soccerlogical says:

    Gus – Marquez is in New York on vacation, to collect a paycheck and play soccer on the weekend.. in that order.

    Nowhere else would he be given set piece duties or allowed to continuously display such horrific defending and wear the captain’s armband.

    And what’s the point of all of Rodger’s good movement if he is slow, short and an awful passer of the final ball who will choke more often than not. You can either start Agudelo for Rodgers or have DeRo support Henry with Lindpere and Richards on the wings and Ballouchi and Tainio in the center mid roles.

  5. Thanks Gus. Actually that is a great question, I know that the supporters clubs had gotten in touch with the Front office on this matter as merchandise sometimes states RBNY and other times NYRB. Personally, I prefer RBNY.

    And guys, Marquez is not the captain….TH14 is the captain of the Red Bulls. Like I stated in the article, the summer will force Backe to make some decisions. Hopefully Marquez’s absence opens the door to a better option.

    De Rosario is good to go for penalty kicks but work on the corner kicks is essential.

  6. Soccerlogical says:

    Sorry Michelle, for some reason I thought Backe had enough sense to appoint a captain who actually leads and was actually familiar with the NYRB establishment like Marquez.

    I guess it’s just another matter of “most money= captain” like Beckham was in the beginning.

    As for work on the corner kicks being essential. A team can work on set pieces all they want but if the player taking the kick has the set piece ability of Mr. Bean then nothing will improve.

  7. Gillian says:

    Painful game to watch. Defending on set pieces was nonexistent. And don’t get me started on the corners. I’m with Backe and so very ready to forget this game!

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