The New York Red Bulls need to balance roster rotation and maximizing points when the Houston Dynamo come to town Wednesday night.
Preview: Roster rotation likely ahead of midweek clash with Dynamo
Sitting two points behind Atlanta United FC in the Supporter’s Shield will surely factor into how Chris Armas approaches the clash with the Dynamo. The visitors recent record suggests a perfect time to rest key pieces in the lineup. The Dynamo are winless dating back to July 7th, and their last win on the road came against the Chicago Fire in May. At 7-11-7, the Dynamo sit in tenth place in the Western Conference.
The Red Bulls are in the midst of a very busy stretch of schedule. Wednesday’s match is their fourth match in 11 days. Given the Red Bulls high-press and fitness first approach, don’t expect wholesale changes in the roster, but some of the heavy lifters may get to take a breather. Is this the week Fidel Escobar makes his way back into the starting XI?
The Red Bulls and Dynamo matches historically produce lots of goals. Over their last four meetings, the home teams have come away victorious, and the teams averaged 4.75 goals per match. Don’t expect that trend to continue this year as the Dynamo’s offense has struggled over the last two months. Also, it is worth noting that the Dynamo have never won when playing at New York.
Players to watch
Tyler Adams is the best and most consistent part of the Red Bulls midfield in 2018. Adams undoubtedly leaves the Red Bulls following this season, so appreciate him while he is still here folks. His role as midfield destroyer has evolved since the start of the season into a box to box attacking threat. Adams factored into all of the last four goals the Red Bulls scored. He may not always be on the stat sheet in the assists column, but his contributions should not go unnoticed.
Mauro Manotas cooled down considerably from the start of the season, but he remains an attacking threat that must be on the minds of Red Bull defenders. The powerful Dynamo offense is ice cold, but the threat of Manotas, Romell Quioto, Alberth Elis, and Tomás Martinez are all talented, and massively underperforming right now. They could be primed for a breakout, especially if the Red Bulls are focused on the weekend match against the Montreal Impact.
Photo by Bill Twomey Photography