Wolyniec: “Feels Great” to Hoist Red Bulls’ First Ever League Title

Photo by Bill Twomey Photography

by ANTHONY J. MERCED

Few people understand the New York Red Bulls’ Cup drought quite like Red Bulls II head coach John Wolyniec. The Staten Island native has been a part of both the Red Bulls and Metrostars organization as a player and now represents them on the touchline in USL.

He did his best to keep his emotions in check following Red Bull II’s USL Championship victory on Sunday night, but did admit that it feels great to win a title for the Red Bulls — no matter which version of the team it may be.

“I actually let myself think about that this week,” said Wolyniec when asked about being the first coach to win a title at Red Bull Arena. “I was proud before the game. I’m proud after the game. I think we put a lot of work in during the year. These guys have been great.”

Wolyniec, an ex-Metrostar and Red Bull player, coached New York Red Bull II to a record breaking regular season where they finished atop the league. From there, he guided them through a grueling knockout tournament that saw them play two consecutive penalty shootout games.

In the Championship game, things couldn’t have gone any better. New York went up by two goals and never relinquished the lead.

“That’s probably one of the proudest moments I have this season,” said Wolyniec when talking about his team’s ability to hold the lead. “In a tough situations where it would have been easy to get a little tight and be concerned, our guys were aggressive and proactive and went after the game in a way that said we’re not giving this away.”

The New York Red Bull organization has won two Supporters Shields in recent years but has never been able to hoist a championship at the end of the league season. New York Red Bull II has accomplished this feat in just their second year of existence.

Many MLS Red Bull players watched on Sunday, cheering the “Baby Bulls” from the stands en route to their USL Cup triumph. Now, it will be those very Baby Bulls taking the role of cheerleaders as the senior side goes for the MLS Cup.