Red Bulls ink Mike Petke to new contract

Image, Rob Tringali/New York Red Bulls Facebook

Winning has it’s advantages.

After bringing the New York Red Bulls to their first ever major trophy with last year’s Supporters’ Shield run, the team has awarded second-year coach Mike Petke with a new contract. Per team regulations, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“Mike is a passionate coach with great potential and this improved contract is the club’s way of recognizing last season’s Supporters’ Shield success,” said Red Bulls Sporting Director Andy Roxburgh. “In the highly competitive MLS, winning the regular season title last year was a great achievement and provides Mike and the club with a good platform to build on.”

“I am pleased to reach a new deal with my hometown club,” Petke said. “We have enjoyed success during my short time as head coach and all of the credit goes to our players, staff and most importantly, our supporters.”

With little time, little leeway and even smaller expectations, Petke did what few coaches have been able to do in New York; establish a team identity, achieve success throughout the year and challenge for a major trophy — all in a rookie season. For his work throughout the year, which included bringing the team to a league-best 59 points through a solid 17-9-8 record, MLS recognized him as a 2013 Coach of the Year finalist.

In many ways, it was a fairy tale season for a coach long regarded as a folk hero amongst the Red Bull faithful. To this day, Petke holds team records for games played with 169 matches (169 in all competitions), games started (158 regular season) and minutes played (14,060).

With the Supporters’ Shield, Petke has already added to his club accolades. Now, he looks to take the next step in 2014.

“While winning the Supporters’ Shield was a major achievement for our club last year, my overall goal of building a team with a long-term identity that our fans can be proud of remains unchanged,” Petke said. “I look forward to continuing this mission in the 2014 season and beyond.”