Another one bites the dust: Red Bulls waive Ivan [Editorial]

The New York Red Bulls have officially waived Andreas Ivan.

The 24-year-old Romanian came to the Red Bulls last summer, leaving SV Waldhof Mannheim 07 in Germany. With 21 appearances, he tallied 2 assists and a goal. Although this will cause mixed feelings on Ivan’s departure, it is not unfair to say fans demanded more of him. But how are fans able to demand more of him if he did not receive playing time?

In total, he logged 490 minutes, just shy of 6 hours. Alex Muyl, with only 2 goals so far this season, received nearly 14 hours of playtime, constantly starting over Ivan, Omir Fernandez, and Derrick Etienne Jr. If you do not give a player the opportunity to play, it is hard for them to even begin to formulate their own style, as well as become successful for the team. Unfortunately, Ivan is another victim to a system that screams development but does not always follow through.

Ivans departure does not come as a surprise. The Red Bulls loaned out Derrick Etienne Jr. last week. Both players struggled to get on the field. The real question here is: who’s next?

With so many changes, you can’t help what wonder what the next move will be. In a private conversation I had with Ivan in our native Romanian language, he expressed his concerns about play time. He was eager to become a success in New York, but without the opportunity to show what he can do on the pitch, it made it more difficult.

Bringing Ivan in was a waste of a time if you’re not investing in his development. Some will argue he was here for a season, and that should have been enough time. Unfortunately, it just isn’t. We’ve seen this time and time again. If you are going to make an investment in foreign players, you have to be willing to invest in their playing time as well. Patience is a key factor with these foreign players. It wasn’t as if the Red Bulls had just signed the next hottest talent from the Premier League. If the Red Bulls are going to continue to sign players from lower leagues, and attempt to develop them into star players, then 400+ minutes is nowhere near enough.

Etienne’s loan came out of left field and uncalled for as well as Ivan’s release. With these changes, additionally with Aaron Long’s failed move to West Ham, you can’t help but wonder what the team’s moral is overall.

Hopefully RBNY can shake the uncertainty in the locker off and come together as a unit to finish the season strong. As for Ivan, I hope he finds a team willing to invest in his success.  

Photo by Jonathan Loarca

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