Foxborough, MA (Sports Network) - Red Bull New York will try to bounce back from a disappointing home loss midweek as the club continues its battle for position in the Eastern Conference playoff picture with a road match at the New England Revolution on Saturday.
New York had the opportunity to climb into first place in the East with a win against Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday, but instead it was held to a 2-0 loss at Red Bull Arena, its first loss at the venue this season.
"Of course I'm surprised, it's a big game," said head coach Hans Backe after the loss. "We're fighting to be number one and win, but [Sporting is] number one. But we played so slow and couldn't come out in our attacking game, of course everyone is disappointed."
The Red Bulls have made a habit of conceding early goals, and Wednesday's loss to Sporting was no exception as C.J. Sapong and Kei Kamara provided the goals inside the opening 20 minutes.
"That's how we've come out every game - home or away," said Red Bulls striker Thierry Henry. "For the guys that follow us, that's the way we come out. I was here the other day talking about Columbus and everybody was bragging about the goal and about the win. I was talking about one thing: to start better and we didn't."
New York and New England have faced each other twice this season, splitting the series with the Red Bulls earning a 1-0 win at home on April 28 before falling 2-0 to the Revs at Gillette Stadium on July 8.
The Revs have been eliminated from postseason contention already, but that doesn't mean that they have nothing left to play for.
According to Ryan Guy, New England is focused on playing well with the hopes of carrying some form into the beginning of next season.
"How we do right now is without a doubt going to carry over to next year," Guy told the club's website. "This is our rebuilding year, we're going to call it now, and I think next year there's going to be even more accountability to do far better than we did this year."
Guy elaborated on the tribulations associated with working under the circumstances of first-year head coach Jay Heaps.
"With a new coach - especially a coach like Jay who's just starting out - I think it's been a good opportunity for him to really find what kind of players he needs and wants around him," the midfielder continued. "We're all adjusting to his style and I think he's demanding more of us to come to his style.
"I think it's melding well. I'm seeing it more and more every week in training. The way he treats us as players is professional and top class and I think it can only get better from here."
The Sports Network