Monday, February 3, 2014

New York Red Bulls

New York’s team is a contender currently in MLS. After winning the Supporters Shield in 2013, the Red Bulls went out to try to improve upon their performance the season before. Stars like Tim Cahill and Thierry Henry would be complimented all around, and the Red Bulls defeated Real Salt Lake for their first title in MLS history. Henry announced he would retire after the 2015 season, a season in which NYCFC started playing. The Henry led Red Bulls lost in the MLS cup to the Sounders. He retired, but would be hired for a front office job. From there, NYRB wouldn’t get back to the promise land. With City buying better talent, the market was starting to swing away from the New Jersey side. On top of that, the Cosmos were building a new stadium in Queens. With Henry’s contract gone, the club went to Europe to look for a new replacement. Many people wanted Zlatan Ibrahimovic, but the club settled for a 30 year old Mario Gomez. The Designated Player contract was a decent signing, but instead of growing the game like Henry did, Gomez was there to compete. The academy was focusing on New Jersey, which the Red Bulls had almost all to themselves. To help out with Gomez, the team brought US striker Jozy Altidore over. The 2016 campaign was alright, but a playoff appearance wasn’t good for the now-spoiled Red Bull fans. Defense is what let them down in the season, Cahill retired at the end of the year, so they had very little big talent to replace the hole. The team went out and bought an Italian defender trying to break into the National Team. With a chip on his shoulder, he played above expectation and got a bid to the MLS All-Star Game. The rest of the team was filled with cast offs from MLS teams, so a first round playoff exit was all the Red Bulls could muster. The New York teams were all competing at such a high level, the Red Bulls wanted to win everyone back. They hosted the first Big Apple Open between the teams, which ended up a disaster. Defeated, they almost rebranded as the New Jersey Red Bulls, and almost the Metrostars. They decided to stick it out and fight. A new defender came up through the system, son of Italian immigrants, he joined the academy at 14 in 2014 and became a star. At 18, he became a starter in the back line for the Red Bulls. The presence in back helped stopped the flood gates. He became a fan favorite, and got national attention choosing to play for the US. Slowly, more quality talent came up through the system and helped the Red Bulls all over. Back ups to the aging Gomez helped in attack, but the player controlling the field was the Italian they brought in. midfield was a big hole to fill. They were connected with a free agent from San Jose, but instead stole a Cosmos player in the off season. Their young star started playing for the US National team, and was a starter at 22 on the 2022 World Cup roster. His great tournament led to calls from Serie A sides from all over. NYRB eventually sold him to his father’s favorite team, Inter Milan. The money from the contract led to some turn over and the purchasing of some more defending talent. The Red Bulls had several playoff appearances, but the stiff competition in the Championship diminished their results in the playoffs. With the designated player rule gone, and the salary cap raised much higher, the Red Bulls have a lot of room to grow and earn back the Big Apple. Most of this concept is the same as the current. The logo and homes are the same, and the clash is similar, except with the front of the kit looking like a Red Bull can.

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