Don’t Blame Toledo; Blame The Red Bulls

Baldomero Toledo ref

By PATRICK MacDONALD
Staff Writer

COMMENTARY – In case you missed it, the New York Red Bulls dropped a 3-1 result on the road to rival Philadelphia Union; a difficult pill to swallow as it was the Union’s first win of the season at home.

As had been the case all season, the Red Bulls put in a horrific defensive display and were thoroughly punished.

However, Twitter would beg to differ.

Admittedly, Twitter is hardly a bastion of rational thought, but sometimes the tinfoil wearing community that populates the interweb gets so out of control, it needs to be reigned in.

So I’m only going to say this once: referee Baldomero Toledo did not cost the Red Bulls this match. The Red Bulls did.

The Red Bulls gave up three goals. Three! Two goals is enough to warrant a poor defensive grade in this game we love so much. Three is a travesty. Poor defense was the culprit on Philadelphia’s first two tallies.

An 18-year-old Matt Miazga has shown plenty of promise this season, but his inexperience reared its ugly head, brutally turning the ball over leading up to Conor Casey’s goal. Later in the match, Miazga aggressively challenged Fred, whiffing and leaving the Union’s attacker a free lane from which to slot home an easy goal, making it 2-0.

So how did Toledo put the Red Bulls in a 2-0 hole? One that even the best squads across the world have trouble climbing out of?

Beats me.

The Red Bulls climbed within one shortly thereafter thanks to the team’s lone pillar of consistency, Bradley Wright-Philips. It appeared minutes later that he tied it up if not for that pesky offside flag. This was perhaps the most debatable call that went against New York. Wright-Philips was maybe a nose offside. You could argue the linesman was being a bit stringent, but offside is offside and before you argue BWP didn’t touch the ball, his skip to the corner flag suggested he thought he touched it.

Let’s consider for a second the Red Bulls were wronged on the offside call. In that case, they still would have lost 3-2. Why? Because Eric Alexander wrapped his arm around Maurice Edu. He wrapped his arm around Edu, letting his emotions over the latter’s tug get the better of him, even when Cahill had the easy clearance. Quite simply, you have to be smarter than that. Alexander wasn’t and was called for the clear penalty.

Game, set, match.

So can we quit the whining about referees? Please? It’s silly and overblown. The Red Bulls have been plagued by a mediocre defense all season; one that’s given up the fourth most in MLS. They were burned by ineffectual play in the back once again. That’s where fan ire should be directed, not at Baldomero Toledo.

  • Dave , yes RB is to blame for the first two goals BUT.. Toledo referring was a big question mark from 26th minute , when LeToux fouled ( kicked ) without the ball our young Ambrosio . That is easy a yellow or even a red card in any play book , he dosn’t get anything . As you stated offside was by the nose , but that offside wouldn’t been called in WC or any other league 99 out of 100. If they scored that goal , RB had a momentum at that time , there would not have been that corner and Edu would not tug Alexander so he could return the favor and tug him back or close line him . Then even soo La Toux dosn’t get punished for his celebration , jumping into stands that’s a yellow even in division 3 college soccer .that would be a second yellow , or he wouldn’t be there in first place . So this is why a lot of ppl are blaming Toledo . It’s been a really bad season for RB in calls from refs , is it a goal #6 against us that shouldn’t stayed or was a coused by terrible call , and goal #3 or 4 for us that was scored according to laws of soccer but was disallowed . refs been a big factor in our 6 loses this season . BtW second goal was more Dax that Matt , as he was standing there like a cone .

  • Newbold

    Spot on Patrick. The buck stops with Petke. Another shocking defensive performance. The problems were obvious from the opening game in Vancouver. Holgersson turned out to be a massive loss. Any chance we could sign him back?