POLL: Setting The Bar For The New York Red Bulls Season

Twenty one games have seemed like three separate seasons for the New York Red Bulls. They started their campaign at 4-1-2, fortified by a strong defense and an inspired Thierry Henry. A 1-1-5 lull followed, where the side underperformed knowing full well the depletion and congestion issues they would encounter come June and July. They emerged from perhaps their most daunting part of the 2011 fixture with a 1-2-4 record while battling for points on the road.

Is it any wonder, then, that the usually unshakable, steadfast coach of the New York Red Bulls, Hans Backe, has adjusted the seasons expectation level? Backe revealed to the New York Post his new aim for the season:


“I said myself when I arrived that it would probably be tough the first year and I said we’d probably win the second. I said too much then, because I didn’t know the Gold Cup. It’s still up to us to qualify for the playoffs … even if I wanted to win the Shield, but that is gone. But it is up to us to get in the playoffs and then I feel we are definitely good enough to win MLS Cup.’’

Up to this point, many sacrifices have been made in order to mold this team into a Supporters Shield contender. Straight down the line, young players from Tony Tchani, Danleigh Borman and the freshly traded Austin da Luz have been sacrificed on the bench for veteran players and discarded for win now options that continue to thin the teams depth. As early as one week ago, the Red Bulls even discarded their chances at a US Open Cup trophy to focus on their season, only to tie a weak Chivas USA side days later.

Perhaps it was the prodding matter in which they performed against Chivas that changed his mind, but suddenly, practically over a weeks time, Backe’s benchmark for success has been hacked down. Making the playoffs has become the goal, without even a mention of the Eastern Conference title to be made.

Now that Backe has lowered the bar, have you? Make your take known,vote in today’s poll and tell us; Where do you set the bar when measuring the success of the New York Red Bulls this season?


  • David Johnson

    People have to hold Backe to account for his actions. His in game tactics are single handedly destroying the teams depth week in and out. Please preserve these guys a bit, and teach Agudelo the meaning of teamm work! He is playing like a one man show out there!

    Starting to lose patienec here.

  • Jay Walk

    Backe should have done this many games ago. At this point, I will be happy if our team makes the play-offs. We had a great season last year and couldn’t get past the Quakes. I don’t expect us to go further this year.