Preview: New York Red Bulls vs. Columbus Crew
Sports Mole provides an overview of Thursday’s clash between the New York Red Bulls and Columbus Crew, in Major League Soccer, including predictions, team news and possible rosters.
Two poorly shaped MLS teams meet on Wednesday as New York Red Bulls Welcome Columbus’ crew at the Red Bull Arena, with the two desperate for a victory.
Both teams are in the lower half of the Eastern Conference and can’t buy a win just yet, but will either team finally manage to collect three points in this meeting?
Recently the manager of the Red Bulls Gerhard Struber saw his team show flashes of promise and produce a lot of excitement – as they play out his pressing style – but the results just don’t come.
The team normally creates plenty of scoring opportunities, but forwards find it difficult to finish them off, and the team as a whole often looks exhausted as play enters the final 30 minutes – physically, due to the high pressure, and mentally, of Struber. constant tactical tinkering.
New York are now winless in seven games, a streak in a row since beating Orlando City 2-1 on Independence Day, and have lost four of their last five games. The most recent defeat came under painful circumstances on Saturday, when a 98th minute Victor wanyama a penalty gave CF Montreal a spectacular 2-1 victory.
This has seen them drop to 11th place in the Eastern Conference and the playoffs are increasingly out of reach, so the wait for a first MLS Cup triumph will surely last at least another year.
They must now focus on stopping the rot, and Columbus will present them with their best opportunity in a while to do so.
The Ohio team are only one place and two points out of the playoff positions, but are on equally disappointing form.
A narrow victory over Atlanta United in July was followed by four straight losses, and there have only been two wins in their last 11 games.
Saturday saw a lackluster performance end in a 1-0 loss to Chicago Fire, thanks to a Luka Stojanovic goal in the final 15 minutes, but it is an exception in what has been a stellar losing streak.
A 4-1 loss to New York City was followed by 4-2 and 4-3 losses at home to DC United and Atlanta respectively – performances that make it easy to forget that The Crew is the defending champion.
A club that conceded the second-fewest goals in MLS a year ago are struggling to keep the ball out of their net this year and, if they are to maintain any hope of defending their title, that will have to change drastically.
Form of New York Red Bulls Major League Soccer:
Columbus Crew Major League Soccer Form:
Red Bulls winger Daniel Royer returned to the bench and made a substitute appearance in the game against Montreal as he recovers from a thigh injury, and he should now be ready for a full 90 minutes.
Andres Reyes also made his return to the day’s squad – if not on the pitch – after a hamstring issue, but Youba Diarra remains with the same problem, and it also seems too early to Cameron Harperthe return.
Defender Aaron Long is out for the season due to a serious Achilles tendon injury.
A large number of players are still missing the crew due to injuries, including Aidan Morris and perry cuisine with left knee problems, Artur with a hip problem, Milton Valenzuela came out with a thigh injury and Josh williams is questionable with an ankle problem.
Vito Wormgoor was fit enough for the bench against Chicago and can now be ready to get back on the defensive line in a 4-2-3-1 setup.
Possible starting lineup for the New York Red Bulls:
Carlos; Nealis, Edwards, Tarek; Tolkin, Duncan, Gutman, Davis, Clark; Klimala, Royer
Possible starting line-up from Columbus Crew:
Room; Abdul-Salaam, Jonathan, Wormgoor, François; Nagbe, Fraser; Etienne, Zelarayan, Santos; Zards
We say: New York Red Bulls 1-1 Columbus Crew
While both teams really need a win, their winless streak may well continue. Columbus has had the best of their last few encounters – winning the last three – but their injury list counts against them and New York will be determined to make amends for this stinging loss to Montreal.
Our expert tipster partners on Sporita.com predict less than 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their proven football tips.Under 3.5: data