Sunday’s New York Red Bulls vs. LA Galaxy Major League Soccer affair was a weird match that had a little bit of everything for the diehard and casual observer. An 18-year advertised to be a potential future star opened up his MLS account in spectacular fashion in front of a national television audience. The hosts hit for a second-half equalizer that was as lucky as it was deserved. What was unquestionably the better overall side did not exit the pitch with all three points because of its own inability to find an adequate final ball when scoring opportunities arose. The draw was a fair result to both the Red Bulls and the Galaxy, but both teams will, when reflecting upon this match, likely feel as if a tie was more of a defeat in this situation.
New York Red Bulls 1-1 LA Galaxy: A star is born?
Here’s hoping you are all ready for the Bradford Jamieson IV hype train, because it is pulling out of the station and making quite the commotion in the process. Jamieson made the first highlight of the contest nine minutes into play when, after completing a darting run toward the RBNY penalty area, he accepted a pass and then crossed New York defender Chris Duvall with a move that Duvall will not look fondly on when reviewing that moment of his career. The final act of the scoring sequence involved Jamieson coolly beating Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles with a composed shot one would expect to see from a veteran front man and not from a youngster who turned 18-years old last fall.
Fans everywhere can begin the countdown to when Jamieson will be likened to footballers such as Juan Agudelo and, of course, Freddy Adu. We all know that it is coming. Just sit back and enjoy the ride, Galaxy faithful. You could be in for some fun times.
New York Red Bulls 1-1 LA Galaxy: The rest of the first half…
was mostly bossed by the Red Bulls, as the home team did everything right except hit the back of the net. New York’s best scoring chance arose when Sacha Kljestan finished a sprint down the right wing by picking out Bradley Wright-Phillips with a perfectly-placed cross delivered into the LA penalty area. Wright-Phillips made strong contact, but he hit his attempt right at Galaxy goalkeeper Jaime Penedo. Penedo could practically not help but make the save, and the attack was silenced.
Lloyd Sam, who quietly delivered yet another positive outing, had eyes for goal in the 15th minute when he hit a swirling strike from just outside of the box. That attempt was blocked.
Set pieces, corner kicks and in the run of play: The Red Bulls were chasing a tally that was seemingly there for the taking. New York finally grabbed that prize 13 minutes after halftime, and it came off of one of the more wonky moments you’ll see this MLS season.
New York Red Bulls 1-1 LA Galaxy: Equalizer
Felipe Martins has been quite the spark for the Red Bulls this spring, and he was right where he needed to be when he needed to be there in the 58th minute. Wright-Phillips had the potential equalizer on his right foot while inside of the box when he unleashed a shot that took a deflection off of a LA player. Felipe, knowing nothing of the pinball action that was to come, stood as an unwilling participant as the ball smashed off of his forehead and past Penedo for a goal that no tactician could draw up on a chalkboard even with money on the line.
It was the type of day where the Red Bulls needed such good fortune, as the team’s shooting boots were apparently left in the dressing room. New York could not locate a match-winner at any point, not even when Felipe dropped a free kick over the LA back line and toward the right post two minutes from time. Mike Grella and Damien Perrinelle, the latter being in an offside position (the flag was never raised), beat their markers, but neither could reach the ball before it crossed harmlessly over the line.
New York Red Bulls 1-1 LA Galaxy: Standings
New York and DC United are tied atop the MLS Eastern Conference points-per-game table (2 ppg each), but the Red Bulls have fallen two points behind both DC and New England Revolution in the standings. LA Galaxy are third in the MLS West, four points behind Vancouver Whitecaps.
New York Red Bulls 1- LA Galaxy: Short turnaround
The Red Bulls and the team’s supporters will have but a couple of days of rest before they go back to work. New York will host Colorado Rapids for a Wednesday evening encounter that will present a new test to RBNY head coach Jesse Marsch, who will be tasked with having his side ready to take on a Colorado team that has been reeling since last fall. Dropping points at home versus the defending MLS Cup champions is one thing.
Failing to defeat the worst team in the MLS West at Red Bull Arena would be unacceptable.