The New York Red Bulls once again find themselves up against the Philadelphia Union in the U.S Open Cup. For the third year in a row, the two sides will meet in the knockout style tournament. The Union have beaten the Red Bulls in the previous two years these teams have faced off. With a spot in the quarterfinals on the line, both sides have plenty to play for.
New York Red Bulls vs. Philadelphia Union: U.S Open Cup Preview
Three Things to Watch
This should be the main talking point for the Red Bulls. They are facing a team that has knocked them out of this tournament two years in a row. Another defeat will certainly be a hard one to swallow for both the club and the supporters. The Red Bulls defeated the Union 2-0 a little over a week ago. However, the Union always seem to show up when they play the Red Bulls.
This has to be the biggest talking point for this match. What will Jesse Marsch do in terms of Sacha Kljestan? This season has been a complete 180 for the MLS MVP Finalist of a season ago. His biggest disappointment of the season definitely came at the hands of New York City FC a few days ago. For Kljestan, it seemed every touch he made just went horribly wrong. He failed to aid the attack in any way, as well as giving the ball away constantly in the midfield. With a match of this magnitude, Marsch may be forced to consider having Kljestan start this match on the bench. It is clear he is not in the best of form right now and have had enough struggled scoring this season.
Anger and Fight
The match against NYCFC wasn’t just a nightmare for Kljestan. The entire team shared in the blame for the 2-0 loss. NYCFC flat out outplayed and embarrassed the Red Bulls on their home field. They need to prove to themselves and their fans that they are much better then what they displayed over the weekend. This team needs to show anger and a ton of fight to defeat a team that knows how to win against them.
Predicted Starting XI
The Red Bulls are in for a tough one. For this match, a lineup change will certainly need to be implemented. Kljestan is on the bench and Gonzalo Veron and Sean Davis find themselves in the starting lineup. Veron has the offensive creativity and legs this team needs in a very short turnaround. In this match I feel the Red Bulls finally end their troubles in the U.S Open Cup against Philly and advance to the quarterfinals by a score line of 1-0.