Thursday, September 16, 2010
Visiting Red Bulls no strangers to streaks
By ESPN.com news services
The New York Red Bulls are getting used to going into hostile environments and trying to snap lengthy streaks.
They'll look to end the 14-game unbeaten run of FC Dallas when the teams complete their season series Thursday night at Pizza Hut Park.
New York (12-8-4) ended Toronto FC's 17-game home unbeaten streak with a 4-1 victory Aug. 21. The Red Bulls' next road game was against defending MLS Cup champion Real Salt Lake on Sept. 4, and RSL won 1-0 to remain unbeaten at home this year.
FC Dallas is 8-0-6 in its last 14 matches.
"(It seems) every time we go away, we play a team that hasn't lost in a long time," striker Thierry Henry told the Red Bulls' official website.
Both teams are close to clinching postseason berths. New York holds the second and final automatic spot in the Eastern Conference while FC Dallas (10-2-11) is third in the West but 13 points clear of missing the playoffs.
New York is one of two teams in the league to defeat Dallas, getting two goals from Juan Pablo Angel in a 2-1 win April 17. Angel has four goals in his last three games against Dallas.
The Red Bulls have since added marquee designated players in Henry and Rafael Marquez. New York is 4-2-2 since Henry's MLS debut July 31.
"Juan Pablo Angel has had a lot of success against us already," FC Dallas coach Schellas Hyndman said. "The addition of Rafael Marquez and Thierry Henry forces our defenders to be very good one-on-one."
Henry has two goals and three assists, and he scored the first goal in Saturday's 3-1 win over Colorado.
Marquez is expected to be available after suffering an ankle injury against the Rapids that forced him to leave in the 72nd minute. He did not practice Tuesday but trained on his own.
"I feel better, but it's a little sore," Marquez said. "It's more the pain than the inflammation right now."
Dallas midfielder Dax McCarty has scored in each of his last two matches against New York and is set for his first action since July 17 after being out with a strained right quadriceps.
The Red Bulls completed a trade Tuesday, acquiring midfielder Mehdi Ballouchy from Colorado in exchange for forward Macoumba Kandji.
Ballouchy appeared in 21 games this season, collecting three goals and five assists. The Moroccan-born 27-year-old was with the Rapids since July 2007.
"It takes a little bit to digest," Ballouchy said. "(But) I am looking forward to being involved with a better organization."
Ballouchy's last goal came against FC Dallas on July 31.