- Thinking through Jamison Olave’s absence
First, the basics: It seems logical to assume that Markus Holgersson will slide over from his recent home at right back to take Jamison Olave’s spot in the middle, alongside Ibrahim Sekagya. Holgersson is really a center back anyway, although he doesn’t physically dominate the middle the way New York’s big, surprisingly fast Colombian can.
(By the way, it was Holgersson who lost Bobby Boswell on Sunday’s telling, 92nd minute goal. Yes, it was Omar Cummings who stuck in the rebound at the far post, but it was Boswell’s unchallenged header that really put the Red Bulls in trouble on that one.)
Petke must choose a right back: the choices include Brandon Barklage and Kosuke Kimura. Barklage came in Sunday as manager Mike Petke shuffled the back line after Olave’s ejection.Barklage started 20 matches this year for New York; Kimura started 15.
Petke could also shuffle the back line even further and re-introduce Costa Rican international Roy Miller, just back from injury, into the lineup.
Back to Olave’s importance, and this part is interesting: According to Opta, the Red Bulls are 15-6-6 with 1.1 goals against when Olave takes a spot in the lineup. They are just 2-3-2 with 1.6 goals against on average when the big Colombian has been absent.
- Yellow card warnings
Four Red Bulls are already on yellow card warning, meaning they will sit out a match with one more booking. The list: Thierry Henry, Jonny Steele, David Carney and Barklage.
Corey Ashe and Boniek Garcia are on warning for the Dynamo.
- Hearing from Mike Petke
Hard to say how the Red Bulls might respond to the way things unfolded. On the one hand a draw on the road to begin these aggregate goals series is pretty good. Most times, teams will take it and go skipping away.
But squandering a 2-0 halftime lead might make this one feel different. Here’s what Pekte had to say: “The red card killed us. Those goals are our fault. It wasn’t something created out of spectacular stuff. It was self-inflicted on us.”
“The rule of thumb is on the road, if you get a tie and go home to your place and it’s pretty much 0-0, it’s a good thing. But our guys are angry at the way that we allowed them back in the game.”