Gallery: Exclusive images from New York City’s 4-0 demolition of DC United on Sunday

New York City put in a dominant display to beat DC United 4-0 in their home opener on Sunday night, with DC left searching for their first goal of the new season after firing another blank.

NYCFC were ruthlessly efficient in and around the DC penalty area, scoring from four of their five shots on target to move up to fourth in the Eastern Conference at this early stage of the season.

David Villa was instrumental in the victory, scoring twice as well as grabbing an assist for Maxi Moralez’s first MLS goal. That all came after Rodney Wallace scored the opening goal just eight minutes in, after Jack Harrison had curled an effort off the crossbar.

DC rallied in the second-half to get back into the game, firing in eight shots at Sean Johnson’s goal, but were unable to get on the board and are left waiting for their first goal of 2017. They will hope to find it when they host Columbus Crew next Saturday.

You can see exclusive images from Sunday’s game below, courtesy of MLSGB photographer Ashley Marshall.

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MLS Fantasy Focus: Time to invest in Crew attackers for Week 7?

By Jamie Dawe and Sam Martin

Double delirium for the Rapids in Week 6, alongside a duo of poor performances for the Red Bulls made last week a complete reversal of form from the 2015 season. However, FC Dallas have stayed true to last season’s form and top the Supporters’ Shield rankings with 17 points from 8 games, six of which were gained in Week 6 with comfortable wins over SKC and the Timbers. A first goal for Seattle’s Jordan Morris ($8.1) could signal the start of things to come from this much-hyped youngster. Overall, Week 6 was a positive one, with plenty of things to build upon in the coming weeks of the campaign.

Week 6 Review

The Good:

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Only six minutes into his MLS return for Montreal, Didier Drogba’s ($11.5) cheeky back heel leveled the score up at 1-1, as Montreal went on to earn three huge points away to Chicago. Impact teammate Ignacio Piatti ($10.6) netted a stunning 90th-minute winner with a curled effort from the edge of the box in a game dominated by Montreal. Meanwhile, the Sounders’ revival continues as Seattle beat Philadelphia 2-1 with defender Chad Marshall ($8.6) heading home from a corner to score for the second consecutive week. While it may have been a disappointing defeat for New York City, World Cup winning forward ‘El Guaje’, David Villa ($11.3) netted a brace – his third and fourth goals of the season. An emphatic victory for LA Galaxy was was started and continued by a Giovani Dos Santos ($10.9) double, with the Galaxy running away as 4-1 winners in Houston. Portland’s Fanendo Adi ($10.2) also continued his fine form, netting his second brace of the campaign against San Jose. Michael Barrios ($8.1) netted in both of Dallas’ games, which leaves the Western Conference leaders on a six-game unbeaten run. On the theme of unbeaten runs, Real Salt Lake remain the only MLS side yet to lose a league match this season. Juan Manuel Martinez ($8.5) netted early in the second half to make it consecutive 1-0 victories. How long can this incredible run continue for RSL?

The Bad:

Seattle Sounders vs Philadelphia Union Red Card Alberg

Philadelphia midfielder Roland Alberg ($8.1) picked up two yellow cards within 53 minutes of his side’s 2-1 defeat to Seattle. Columbus Crew’s Tyson Wahl ($6.0) conceded a penalty that teammate Michael Parkhurst then saw red for in a case of mistaken identity in his side’s eventual win over NYCFC. Wahl has since been handed the suspension that Parkhurst was wrongly given. Portland’s Diego Valeri ($10.3) also saw red in the dying moments of Portland’s 3-1 triumph, picking up a 90th minute yellow and 95th minute red card. The Red Bulls made it six defeats from seven as the star club from the 2015 season are being let down by key attacking players such as Bradley Wright-Phillips ($10.5), Lloyd Sam ($8.9) and Mike Grella ($7.8), with the team having only netted five goals from their seven matches so far. A club with such high expectations will be expecting to push on sooner rather than later. Houston Dynamo dropped to the bottom of the Western Conference after being outclassed by LA Galaxy, despite taking the lead within the first minute. The Dynamo have only managed one win so far this campaign (admittedly it was a resounding 5-0 romp against Dallas, with this being Dallas’ only defeat). It summarises the thrilling unpredictability of the league!

Week 7 Preview

Must Buy:

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With Columbus finally returning to form in their victory over NYCFC, now’s the time to stock up on their star players. When Kei Kamara ($10.9), Ethan Finlay ($10.7) and Federico Higuain ($10.3) are firing on all cylinders, they are an unbeatable side. Looking ahead to upcoming DGW’s, adding some SKC players would certainly seem wise. Nuno Coelho ($8.3) is quickly building a name for himself in Kansas City, along with their only two other ever-present starters, goalkeeper Tim Melia ($5.7) and French fullback Amadou Dia ($6.0).

Must Sell:

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Chicago Fire only play once in the next three weeks, so budget-hogging players like David Accam ($9.2) and Kennedy Igboananike ($8.1) need to be discarded for now. Portland are relying incredibly heavily on Adi and the now suspended Valeri, and won’t play in Week 7. Even when they do return to action, it might be worth transferring out Lucas Melano ($8.7), who is extremely pricy for a player that’s yet to really shine. Injuries to Marco Pappa ($8.2), Matt Hedges ($9.0) and Alvas Powell ($7.1) mean these three players will be dead weight for at least the next two or three game weeks and replacements should be brought in.

Who will you be transferring in for Week 7?

MLS Preview and Prediction: New York Red Bulls vs Houston Dynamo

Competition: Major League Soccer – New York Red Bulls vs. Houston Dynamo

Venue: Red Bull Arena – Saturday, March 19 – 19:00 ET (23:00 GMT) 

Match Odds: NY Red Bulls 4/6 – Draw 14/5 – Houston 4/1

Match Preview

New York Red Bulls welcome Houston Dynamo to Red Bull Arena on Saturday as they look to finally get off the mark in the 2016 Major League Soccer regular season.

The reigning Supporters’ Shield holders have endured a very tough opening two games so far this season and are yet to score a goal. They lost their opener at home against Toronto and last weekend fell to a 3-0 thumping away at Montreal.

Although it is early doors this is still a worrying factor for Jesse Marsch and he will have his side fully prepared to take on an inform Houston side. Red Bulls are currently propping up the Eastern Conference and nothing short of a win here will be good enough.

If the Red Bulls are to challenge for the Supporters’ Shield again this campaign they are going to need to be far more impressive than they have been so far. It isn’t all doom and gloom as we are still early into the new campaign but Marsch’s side cannot afford another lapsed performance here and they will already have some impatient fans heading into the tie.

Sebastian Giovinco Penalty

Houston come to Red Bull Arena in a prime position. They are unbeaten in their opening two outings and have looked impressive.

They come into the tie off the back of their amazing 5-0 demolition job over FC Dallas last weekend, a result that not only shocked fans but sent out a message to the rest of the Western Conference.

Owen Coyle will be delighted to see his side sitting third in the West but will be more than aware of how difficult this tie can be.

Dynamo have really struggled on the road in recent times in MLS and they won just twice away from home last season. Starting with an away win here would be an enormous boost.

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Team News

New York Red Bulls have just the one injury concern heading into this tie as Damien Perrinelle remains out.

Houston Dynamo have five injury concerns. Collen Warner is out, while Tyler Deric, DaMarcus Beasley, Giles Barnes and Cristian Maidana are all doubts.

Key Points

New York Red Bulls’ form: L/L

Houston Dynamo’s form: D/W

Key Stat: New York Red Bulls are unbeaten in their last 13 home matches against Houston in all competitions.

Key Player: Sacha Klještan – The NYRB midfielder can help lead his side here after their poor start to the season. If he can get on the ball, control the game and keep things simple this weekend it will enable his teammates to regain some of their lost confidence.

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Score Prediction

New York Red Bulls 2-1 Houston Dynamo – Red Bulls to continue their good run of form at home against Houston and pick up their first win of the season in a very competitive tie. Dynamo have conceded at least two in their last six away outings and that combined with their poor away form will likely cost them here, despite a good start to the campaign.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Portland Timbers vs New York Red Bulls

Competitions: Major League Soccer – Portland Timbers vs. New York Red Bulls 

Venue: Providence Park – Sunday, September 20 – 17:00 ET (22:00 BST)

Match Odds: Portland Timbers 13/10 – Draw 5/2 – New York Red Bulls 19/10

Match Preview

Portland Timbers entertain New York Red Bulls on Sunday with both side in playoffs places in their respective conferences.

The Timbers are sitting 6th in the Western Conference on 41 points. They come into the game off the back of a 0-0 draw at home against Sporting Kansas City. They now haven’t won in their last three.

Caleb Porter will have his players aware that they cannot afford to drop points at this late stage of the regular season, with no side in the Western Conference mathematically unable to make the playoffs. Just seven points separate Portland from bottom side Colorado Rapids.

Portland won 2-1 in the last meeting between the sides back in 2014. The last two ties between these two at Providence Park have ended 3-3.

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New York Red Bulls missed an opportunity to open up a three point lead at the top of the Eastern Conference in midweek as they lost 2-1 to New England Revolution.

They are still in a strong position to top the Eastern Conference as they have two games in-hand, but cannot afford anymore slip-ups.

NYRB haven’t won an away game in their last three attempts and will be aware that this will be no easy task.

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Team News

Portland have just the one injury concern coming into this one with Ben Zemanski out. Alvas Powell is one booking away from suspension.

New York Red Bulls will be without Chris Duvall and Roy Miller, both ruled out through injury. Connor Lade and Dax McCarty are both suspended due to yellow card accumulation. Felipe Martins and Matt Miazga are one booking away from suspension.

Key Points

Portland Timbers’ last five in MLS: W/W/D/L/D

New York Red Bulls’ last five in MLS: W/L/W/W/L

Key Stat: Portland are unbeaten in their last then home games.

Key Player: Lloyd Sam – The Red Bulls winger has netted seven times this season, created 32 chances for teammates and has registered four assists. He can be a real handful for opposition defenders to deal with with his pace and direct approach.

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Score Prediction

Portland Timbers New 2-2 York Red Bulls – Another stalemate between these sides at Providence Park in a game with plenty of action.

MLS Preview and Prediction: New York Red Bulls vs DC United

Competition: Major League Soccer – New York Red Bulls vs. DC United

Venue: Red Bull Arena – Sunday, August 30 – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: NY Red Bulls 8/15 – Draw 100/30 – DC United 9/2

Match Preview

This Sunday evening will see the battle at the top of the Eastern Conference heat up as second place New York Red Bulls host first place DC United in the latest Atlantic Cup rivalry game in what is one of the standout fixtures of Heineken Rivalry Week.

The home side come into this one off the back of their 3-2 loss away at Chicago Fire on Wednesday night. They are sitting five points behind their DC United ahead of this fixture but have three games in hand so this is a great chance for Jesse Marsch’s side to close the gap on their fierce rivals.

The Red Bulls will be confident heading into the game but know it will be a tough task to take all three points. This is the third meeting between the sides this season in MLS and DC are yet to win, with the most recent game ending 2-2 at RFK Stadium in April.

The previous meeting at Red Bull Arena ended with in a 2-0 win for the home side back in March. Marsch and fans alike will be hoping for a repeat of that scoreline so they can move closer to DC at the top of the Eastern and claim back the Atlantic Cup series after last year’s 3-1 aggregate loss.

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DC United come into this one after losing their second consecutive game. Their 2-0 home loss to San Jose Earthquakes is not what Ben Olsen would have expected from his side and there is a danger of the wheels coming off at the worst possible time.

DC have struggled on the road this season, having won just four of their 13 away ties. Olsen will be aware of Red Bulls’ recent home form and knows his players have a tough task on their hands here to take all three points.

Olsen’s side still have a chance of winning the Supporter’s Shield but are up against it now after their previous two defeats.

This is the first of two consecutive away games for DC and they will want to ensure they can take a positive result here so that confidence levels around the squad do not drop any further.

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Team News

New York Red Bulls are expected to be without Chris Duvall. Kemar Lawrence is also a doubt for this one. Ronald Zubar returned on Wednesday and could line up again alongside Matt Miazga. Shaun Wright-Phillips will be hoping for a start after sitting on the bench once again on Wednesday.

DC United have four injury concerns. Eddie Johnson and Chris Korb are out, while Fabian Espindola and Bill Hamid are doubts. Perry Kitchen and Davy Arnaud are both one booking away from suspension.

Key Points

New York Red Bulls’ last five in MLS: W/D/W/W/L

DC United’s last five in MLS: W/W/W/L/L

Key Stat: Solid – Red Bulls have won their last four regular season home games.

Key Player: Bradley Wright-Phillips – The Red Bulls forward has netted 11 goals so far this campaign and has three goals in his last five appearances.

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Score Prediction

New York Red Bulls 2-1 DC United  – This will be a close game which neither side can afford to drop points in. Red Bulls to edge it and claim the Atlantic Cup series.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Seattle Sounders vs New York Red Bulls

Competition: Major League Soccer – Seattle Sounders vs. New York Red Bulls

Venue: CenturyLink Field – Sunday, May 31 – 17:00 ET (22:00 BST – Live on Sky Sports 5)

Match Odds: Seattle 19/20 – Draw 12/5 – New York 14/5

Match Preview

Seattle Sounders take on New York Red Bulls in one of the standout fixtures this weekend with two of the top sides in MLS going head-to-head in the only meeting between them this season.

Seattle come into the game off the back of a midweek 1-0 home victory over the Colorado Rapids as they moved to the top of the Western Conference and Supporters’ Shield standings with the three points.

They are now unbeaten in three and have only lost one of their last seven as they boast the best form in MLS.

Photo: Denise McCooey

Photo: Denise McCooey

After a worrying start, the Sounders have now found their form and look to be back to their strong best.

That will be a worry for the New York Red Bulls, who travel to CenturyLink Field in poor form after losing to the Philadelphia Union at home last weekend.

They have not scored in their last two and need to try and turn things around quickly, though that will be extremely tough as they have only won one of four trips to Seattle in MLS.

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It is sure to be a great spectacle between two of the best sides in the league and it’s one you won’t want to miss.

Team News

Seattle have doubts hanging over the heads of Gonzalo Pineda and Obafemi Martins ahead of this one. Chad Barrett will be pushing for a third start in four games if Martins is not fit to feature from the outset, while Leonardo Gonzalez will hope to keep his place at left-back.

The Red Bulls have defensive worries this week as Ronald Zubar, Kemar Lawrence and Damien Perrinelle are all doubts, while Sal Zizzo is definitely out. Sacha Kljestan and Perrinelle are one yellow card from suspension and need to be careful. Mike Grella is likely to keep his place on the left wing. Lloyd Sam told us this week about getting his aggression back and will look to end his minor scoring drought in this one.

Key Points

Seattle Sounders’ last five: W/L/W/D/W

New York Red Bulls’ last five: D/L/W/D/L

Key Stat: Seattle Sounders have kept a clean sheet in their last four home matches in MLS.

Key Player: Clint Dempsey – The attacking star has been in good form this season and will be desperate to get a goal after three games without one. Expect him to cause all kinds of problems for the Red Bulls defence.

Photo: Denise McCooey

Photo: Denise McCooey

Score Prediction

Seattle Sounders 2-0 New York Red Bulls – The Red Bulls have hit a worrying spell of form in front of goal at the wrong time. The Sounders have kept four straight clean sheets at home and will expect to win this one in what should be a great game.

EXCLUSIVE: Lloyd Sam looking ‘to get aggression back’ as Red Bulls look to evolve

The New York Red Bulls have started 2015 in much better form than many predicted, and are currently three points better off than at the same stage last season, despite the change in head coach and the loss of Designated Players Thierry Henry and Tim Cahill.

But not everything changed, and Lloyd Sam is one of the players who has remained an integral part of the Red Bulls team, as he has since joining from Leeds United in 2012.

The English winger started the campaign with three goals in four matches and is already on the same number as he was after 27 weeks in 2014, but he admits that he is not happy with his recent goalscoring drought, having not scored in seven.

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“At the moment I’m not really happy with myself in front of goal,” Sam told MLSGB. “I haven’t scored in a few games and I want to get back to that aggression that I was showing in the first few matches.

“So I’ve got to get back to that, running hard in the box and really making myself a nuisance. We’re looking at that right now about getting that aggression back.”

There were concerns that the Red Bulls were going to struggle this season after waving goodbye to Mike Petke despite their playoff run to the Eastern Conference final at the end of last season.

But Jesse Marsch has come in and has done well with the squad so far, leading them to third place in the Eastern Conference. They are just five points off top placed DC United and have two games in hand but Sam isn’t surprised by the encouraging start to the season.

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“I don’t know if I’m surprised,” the former Charlton Athletic winger said. “After going into preseason everything started well and I wouldn’t say I’m surprised because I look around me and I see good players and good people.

“It’s going to be hard to keep up the same style but we’re going to endeavor to do it and hopefully get stronger and stronger, and evolve into the team we want to be.”

Sam’s fellow Englishman Bradley Wright-Phillips tied the MLS record with 27 regular season goals in an exceptional season last year, and even though regular provider Thierry Henry has left, Wright-Phillips has still netted five times from ten starts so far in 2015.

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The two English attackers have a strong relationship on the field and off it, and Sam loves playing alongside last season’s MLS Golden Boot winner.

“He’s a really good guy. I love having him here and enjoy playing with him, especially when he converts a cross that I put in.

“I know his family so it’s good having him here and it’s good to go on the pitch with a guy that I know from London already. We’ve got good camaraderie.”

What have you made of Lloyd Sam and the New York Red Bull’s start to the 2015 season?

Former Chelsea and Manchester City star free to complete MLS move

Former Chelsea and Manchester City star Shaun Wright-Phillips is free to join up with brother Bradley Wright-Phillips at New York Red Bulls following his release at Queens Park Rangers.

Wright-Phillips has endured a torrid time at QPR and only played 128 minutes in the Premier League this season; only managing one start.

As he heads towards the twilight years of his career, SWP may want to join his brother at the Red Bulls. They are currently in search for a natural winger to replace Thierry Henry on the left flank, after the Arsenal legend retired at the end of the 2014 MLS season.

Bradley Wright-Phillips has been sensational since moving to the States in 2013 and has an incredible goalscoring record of 33 goals in just 48 games for the Red Bulls.

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BWP, holder of the MLS Golden Boot award, has started the current season in form, already netting five goals in 11 appearances.

The addition of SWP would provide balance to the side as well as frightening pace on both flanks, with Lloyd Sam already playing from the right.

Having already played for top clubs in England like Manchester City, Chelsea and QPR; the winger has more than enough pedigree to perform in MLS.

Would Shaun Wright-Phillips benefit from a move to Major League Soccer?

MLS Preview and Prediction: New York Red Bulls vs New York City FC

Competition: Major League Soccer – New York Red Bulls vs. New York City FC

Venue: Red Bull Arena – Sunday, May 10th – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST – Monday, May 11th)

Match Odds: New York Red Bulls 4/6 – Draw 14/5 – New York City FC 4/1

Match Preview

New York Red Bulls and New York City FC clash at the Red Bull Arena on Sunday night for the first ever New York derby in MLS history.

The Red Bulls come into the game against their newly formed rivals as strong favourites despite suffering their first defeat of the season away at New England Revolution last time out.

Jesse Marsch‘s side have won three and drawn four of their opening eight matches as well as still remaining undefeated at home and they currently sit fourth in the Eastern Conference with a game in hand on the teams above them.

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New York Red Bulls have been a joy to watch so far this season with some excellent, entertaining link-up play between the likes of Bradley Wright-Phillips, Lloyd Sam and Felipe Martins. That’s not to mention how impressive both Mike Grella and Sacha Kljestan have been.

It seems unfair to name just a few as the whole squad have in-fact been outstanding, and when you consider that many were expecting the Red Bulls to struggle in 2015, it’s been a very strong start which shows they mean business.

To say that New York City FC’s start to life in MLS has been a struggle would be an understatement. They’ve managed just one win from their first nine games, drawing three and losing five.

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The numbers don’t make for pretty reading for Jason Kreis and his side and the 3-1 defeat at home to Seattle last time out was NYC’s third consecutive loss and the fifth loss in six games.

New York City are eight in the Eastern Conference coming into this game and whichever way you dress it up, they need to improve. And fast. A positive result in the first ever derby match would go a long way to silencing the early critics and laying down a platform on which to build upon.

It promises to be an exciting game and New York City will look to upset all the odds when they take to the Red Bull Arena field, but New York Red Bulls will be confident of inflicting more misery on the men in sky blue.

Team News

New York Red Bulls won’t be able to call upon Sal Zizzo for a few months as he recovers from a broken leg. There are doubts over whether defender Ronald Zubar will feature after he missed the last game with a hamstring injury.

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New York City will be without the injured George John and Tony Taylor as well as the suspended Kwame Watson-Siriboe. Javier Calle, Jason Hernandez and Adam Nemec are all doubts.

Key Points

New York Red Bulls’ last five: D/W/D/D/L

New York City FC’s last five: L/D/L/L/L

Key Stat: Only Montreal Impact have scored fewer goals (5) than New York City (6) in MLS this season and the Impact have played four games less than NYC.

Key Player: Felipe Martins – The Brazilian has been excellent since joining from Montreal Impact and could provide the Red Bulls with the moment of magic that unlocks the NYC defence.

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Score Prediction

New York Red Bulls 2-0 New York City FC – New York Red Bulls haven’t lost just one game this season by fluke, but more because they’ve been impressive. New York City are really struggling and it’s hard to see how they can get anything from this one. With that said, it is a local derby which would suggest that form is irrelevant, although the Red Bulls should still brush them aside.

MLS Preview and Prediction: New England Revolution vs New York Red Bulls

Competition: Major League Soccer – New England Revolution vs. New York Red Bulls 

Venue: Gillette Stadium – Saturday, May 2nd – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST)

Match Odds: New England Revolution 23/20 – Draw 23/10 – New York Red Bulls 23/10

Match Preview

New England Revolution face New York Red Bulls on Saturday in one of this weekend’s standout fixtures. The Eastern Conference rivals are just separated by a point with the Revs leading the conference after eight weeks.

Jay Heaps’ side have had a strong start to the season and will be challenged here against a Red Bulls side that remain the only unbeaten team in MLS.

The Revs come into this one off back-to-back wins in a six-game unbeaten streak and look in a strong position ahead of the game.

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Goals have been coming from all over the field for New England, five from midfield and five from the forward line, with seven different scorers netting those ten goals. Charlie Davies has bagged two in his last two outings and will be hoping he can prove himself to be a big game player in this one.

New York Red Bulls remain unbeaten but have drawn four of their opening seven games. With back-to-back home draws, they will hope for better success on the road but will need to try and stop conceding the first goal to improve their chances.

It seems as if they are missing out on opportunities to be leading the Eastern Conference but if they can continue this unbeaten form it will give them a great chance of competing for top spot.

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Bradley Wright-Phillips and Lloyd Sam have started the season in brilliant form, scoring six between them. Wright-Phillips netted again midweek and his form in front of goal will be pivotal to how his side fare in the big games.

Red Bulls will have had just three days between this and their 1-1 draw against Colorado Rapids. They would have been expecting to win that game and cannot afford any complacency this weekend.

Team News

New England Revolution could be without four as Darrius Barnes, Jose Goncalves, Daigo Kobayashi and Lee Nguyen are carrying injuries. Nguyen would be a huge miss in the middle of the park but the Revs have coped well without key players already this season so Heaps should be able to rejig his midfield to cater for any potential absentees.

New York Red Bulls have just one injury concern to defender Ronald Zubar. Other than that Jesse Marsch has a full squad at his disposal. He will again be hoping for Wright-Phillips and Sam to combine but knows this is going to be a tough test.

Key Points

New England Revolution’s last five: W/W/D/W/W

New York Red Bulls’ last five: W/D/W/D/D

Key Stat: Goals – There have been 16 goals in the last five meetings between the sides so if that is anything to go by we could have an end-to-end tie.

Key Player: Lloyd Sam – The Red Bulls forward has really stepped up so far this season and is a real threat, he can be key to unlocking the Revs defence.

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Score Prediction

New England Revolution 2-2 New York Red Bulls – Another close tie with action like usual. The Red Bulls to continue their unbeaten run in possibly their toughest challenge so far.