New York Red Bulls vs. Houston Dynamo: Match Preview

Posted In Match Previews and Reviews - By Ted Meyer On Saturday, May 21st, 2011 With 0 Comments

New York and Houston square off with both teams looking to snap a three game winless streak and reassert themselves as the class of the East. Despite no wins in May, New York still sits on top Eastern Conference table, but a loss to Houston will cause them to fall out first place. Houston has a fantastic opportunity at home to potentially leapfrog Philadelphia and New York into first place in the East.

Houston enters this match after an ugly hard fought 0-0 draw against Real Salt Lake last week. Although it extended their winless streak to three games, Houston had to feel that the result was favorable especially on the road against a top team in the West.  New York looked exposed in the back against Chivas USA last week, which means new striker Will Bruin could become a major factor in the game. He has already shown that he can get behind defenses and find the back of the net. If he starts scoring it should spell good news for Houston.

With Brad Davis, Lovel Palmer, and Geoff Cameron, Houston’s midfield has been vital to their resurgence after a disappointing season last year. Palmer’s defensive effort and distribution in the attack has especially been vital, and they will need to continue their efforts if they are to undo the star powered New York Red Bulls.

For New York, they have to bounce back after a crushing home loss to Chivas USA, who sit in the bottom of the West. The one positive for New York is that their offense is firing on all cylinders. Luke Rodgers is proving to be a great addition to a forward line that already includes Theirry Henry and Juan Agudleo. Against Chivas USA, Rafeal Marquez played a beautiful long ball that found the feet of Henry and he slotted it home to tie the game at one. However, it appears that Henry has suffered an knee injury and could miss the game on Saturday. That means it mostly fall to Agudelo and Rodgers to keep the offense moving.

On the flip side, the New York Red Bulls defense looked exposed, especially on set plays, which Justin Braun to slot home a hat trick for the Chivas USA side. With Brad Davis, Houston have been very dangerous off set pieces and New York will have to focus on containing the attack. Most of that will fall on Tim Ream and Rafael Marquez to organize the defense and keep an of the Houston attack from finding the back of the net. If they start to fall behind early like they did against Chivas, they may not be able to climb their way back on the road.

In this epic battle for Eastern supremacy, I see Houston coming away as the victor and claiming the top spot in the East with a 2-1 victory.

About Ted Meyer - Ted Meyer is a writer for The Allocation Order. He is also host of the Bring Back the Stripes Podcast, a D.C. United centered podcast on World Soccer and co-host of Around the League on the Champions Soccer Radio Network.

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