A Juan Pablo Angel sighting caused an understandably stir today as the Colombian striker spent some time kicking around with his old club – raising questions along the way.
Angel, 37, is currently under contract with Atlético Nacional in Colombia’s top division. But he is a highly regarded figure around the New York Red Bulls organization and a former teammate of current head coach Mike Petke, who was happy to have the veteran striker as a guest at the club’s training facility at Montclair State University.
He’s staying around for Saturday’s match in nearby Harrison against struggling Vancouver.
Angel scored 58 goals over four seasons in New York. And he did get to perform for one season inside the wonderful Red Bull Arena. Still, wouldn’t it be nice to see the guy back, if only in a limited role, off the PATH train’s Harrison stop?
I don’t know. Right now I have a contract with Nacional. I’m enjoying my time greatly there. Who knows … They know my feelings about this place. I’ve only said that I have good memories and good words about how I was treated here. Hopefully tomorrow is a good game and I’m looking forward to being a spectator of a Red Bulls game.”
The Red Bulls are well-stocked up front. Thierry Henry remains among the league’s top strikers, still able to change a game at any moment. Fabian Espindola hasn’t matched his March production, but he remains a dangerous presence. Tim Cahill has finally began scoring out of the midfield, but he can clearly play along the front line, too.
But if there is any salary room to bring in Angel in late July, to provide cover for Henry – who does tend to pick up minor injuries – and to put a slightly bigger brain around the Red Bulls overall attack …
It would make New York look that much better down the stretch.