Mike Petke confessed holding Thierry Henry out of Saturday’s game at Montréal was already in the cards, but when an MRI on the Frenchman’s left knee revealed a sprained MCL, New York had their doctor’s note. Unlikely to play on Olympic Stadium’s turn to begin with, Henry has been ruled out of the Red Bulls’ Saturday game in Quebec.
Henry was on the wrong end of a James Riley tackle on Saturday against D.C. United, one that sent him down the Red Bull Arena tunnel before full time. Add that to an Achilles problem that could have kept him off Stade Olympique’s new but still pretty turfy turf and Petke could check multiple boxes.
“It was one of those things that I was very seriously leaning towards not even bringing him to Montreal, but no decision was final yet because we had a week from the D.C. game to the next game,” said Petke. “But this is very ideal for me not to have him play on turf with his Achilles tendon. It’s not ideal how it worked out, but it did work out.”
According to a man on the beat, Josue Martinez, Amando Moreno or Peguy Luyindula could move into a starting lineup. Those aren’t exactly the most encouraging options for a team still chasing their first win, especially when Tim Cahill will also be out (thank playing through an international break for that one).
The good news for New York: Montreal defender Alessandro Nesta is also out. But missing two Designated Players for Saturday’s trip to the 3-0-0 Impact, it’s not hard to see Red Bulls’ winless start (0-1-2) hitting four games.
Expect next week’s visit from Philadelphia to be a particularly important one. New York’s hopeful Henry will be back for that one.