Trio of Red Bulls Headed to the MLS All-Star Game
The Red Bulls are coming off of a strong week, earning four out of a possible six points from a July 30 draw at Real Salt Lake before defeating the New England Revolution at home on Saturday. Before the Bulls head to Chicago for a match against Mike Magee and company on Sunday, the squad and the league are taking a rest for the 2014 MLS All Star Game in Portland.
The latest installment of the annual MLS tradition will kickoff Wednesday evening at 9:30 PM EST. Three Red Bulls will be featured in the 18-man game day roster; forwards Thierry Henry and Bradley Wright-Phillips, as well as midfielder Tim Cahill.
Thierry Henry leads the league with ten assists, while his partner up top, Wright-Phillips, is currently the front-runner for the golden boot race with 18 goals at the midway point. Wright-Phillips is just one goal shy of Juan Pablo Angel’s club record for goals in the regular season. Cahill, still riding high from his masterful performance with Australia during the World Cup, adds one goal and two assist to the team stat sheet while providing an indispensable two-way presence in central midfield.
The trio arrived in Portland Monday morning to train for Wednesday evening’s game with an assembly of talent that is nothing short of world class. Joining the three Red Bulls will be some of the top players in the United States, many of whom starred for the country during the World Cup. Michael Bradley, Graham Zusi, Omar Gonzalez, Matt Besler, Kyle Beckerman, DeAndre Yedlin, and Landon Donovan highlight a masterful selection of players that will all be on the field Wednesday evening.
There will be quite an influx of international talent in the game as well. In addition to Henry (France), Wright-Phillips (England) and Cahill (Australia), former England national Jermaine Defoe, Nigerian superstar Obafemi Martins, and Irish captain Robbie Kean will all participate in the All-Star activities.
Facing the MLS All-Stars on Wednesday evening will be German powerhouse and defending Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich. There has been no announcement of who will play for the Bavarian side, but fans in Portland will certainly be excited to see the newest American phenom Julian Green play, if and when he takes to the pitch. Green, who was a controversial addition to the World Cup squad, silenced his critics by scoring a masterful goal against Belgium on what was his very first touch of the tournament.
Since adopting the “All-Stars vs. Guest” format in 2005 the MLS is 5-4 against their visiting European opponents. In 2013 the league’s best were defeated by the Serie A giants AS Roma, 3-1.
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