National TV Listings:
Three Big Storylines:
- Thierry Henry is going to play on turf. Henry signed with the Red Bulls in 2010, but his disdain for artificial turf has lead to the fact that this will be his debut match at New England. New England Revolution play at Gillette Stadium. Gillette Stadium has turf.
- Red Bulls head to New England down 2-1. The odds do not look good, but Red Bulls will hope to lean on an engaged Tim Cahill for this match. Cahill has been the talisman for Australia, but has been an afterthought for the Red Bulls. Frenchman Peguy Luyindula has partnered with Henry quite capably. Add in Bradley Wright-Phillips who tied the MLS single season goal scoring record with 27 and Designated Player Tim Cahill has been bumped from the starting lineup. (More on BWP below as he is not available.)
- New England have been the best team in MLS since winning a blind draw over the Chicago Fire for the rights to make Jermaine Jones a Designated Player on August 24th of this year. Jones was at the center of a refereeing controversy that saw him get off with a yellow card for a tackle on Dax McCarty in the 26th minute that during the regular season would likely (okay probably or surely) have been a straight red card. The opening leg saw 10 yellow cards, including a yellow card for Bradley Wright-Phillips that sees the MLS leading scorer miss the return leg due to yellow card accumulation.
This is where your author writes about who to root for From a Sounders Point Of View. Well, the Sounders will gladly host either team if they can get by the Galaxy on Sunday night. Your author will be cheering for the New York Red Bulls as the chance to see one of the best players of this generation (that would be Thierry Henry) play possibly his last game as a professional at the CLink whilst also giving interview after interview about his disdain for artificial turf is too good an opportunity to pass up. Plus, New England are playing really well.
Enjoy your MLS Conference Final Gamethread. As a side note, I sincerely hope to not be writing next week's MLS Cup Gamethread in this space.