Soccer players never get tired of playing the game.

That’s what this page is all about.

Where your FIRST TOUCH SOCCER book ends, the FREE KICK page begins.

It’s a chance for you to learn more about the Red Bulls … and for me to talk about some of the great stories I couldn’t squeeze into the book.

Scroll down to get the latest news … and to learn more about American soccer. And check out some of the cool collectibles I have in my home.

Enjoy this site, check back whenever you like, and contact me with any questions or comments.

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Breaking News

Sacha Kljelstan
(Black Book Partners)

What’s up with the New York Red Bulls

2020 Season Preview: The Red Bulls will be missing several big names from 2019, so there are many questions heading into 2020. Some answers may come from veteran midfielder Kaku and Team USA star Aaron Long. Daniel Royer will look to lead the Red Bulls in goals again.

October 20, 2019: The Red Bulls’ season ended with a playoff loss to Philadelphia Union. The club went 14–14–6 during the regular season. Midfielder Daniel Royer led the Red Bulls with 14 goals and 9 assists.

October 28, 2018: The Red Bulls finished the season with an MLS record 22 wins and 71 points. Goalkeeper Luis Robles notched his 14th shutout to lead the league.

April 10, 2018: The Red Bulls reached the semifinals of the CONCACAF Champions League, but lost to CD Guadalajara. Defender Michael Murillo was named to the tournament’s Best XI team.

2018 Season Preview: Popular captain Sacha Kljestan was traded to Orlando City for defender Tommy Redding and forward Carlos Rivas, who join a solid core of experienced players. Much will ride on the talent of Argentine midfielder Romero Gamarra, also known as “Kaku,” and teenage star Tyler Adams.

October 7, 2017: Sacha Kljestan set up two of the Red Bulls’ three goals in a 3–0 victory over Toronto. The second assist was his 17th of the year—the most of any MLS player in 2017.

March 11, 2017: The Red Bulls played their first home game of the season with a new captain, Sacha Kljestan. He took over the captain’s role after Dax McCarty was traded to Chicago. McCarty played in 198 games for the red Bulls—more than anyone in team history.

Major League Soccer & the MLS Cup

MLS Cup
(© Major League Soccer)

  • The Red Bulls are members of Major League Soccer (MLS), the top soccer league in North America. MLS played its first season in 1996 with 10 teams. In 2017, MLS had 22 teams. Each club plays 34 games in the regular season, followed by the playoffs. The MLS schedule stretches from March to December (including the playoffs). Most pro leagues around he world begin in the fall and end in the spring, leaving time for top players to compete in summer tournaments, such as the World Cup.

  • Much like other U.S. sports leagues, the MLS clubs with the best records compete in postseason playoffs. The winner of each conference advances to the MLS Cup, the league’s one-game championship final.

Collector’s Corner

Tab Ramos
(© The Upper Deck Company)

Sacha Kljestan
(© Topps, Inc.)

More treasures from the author’s collection!

  • Tab Ramos — Midfielder
    1996–2002
    Tab Ramos was the first player to sign to play Major League Soccer. He finished his long career in soccer as a member of the MetroStars. Ramos was a great team leader and was an MLS All-Star in 1996, 1998, and 1999.

  • Tony Meola — Goalkeeper
    1996–1998 & 2005–2006
    Tony Meola was one of the first big stars in MLS. He manned the net for the MetroStars and Red Bulls. Meola was voted to the MLS Best XI in 2005.

  • Giovanni Savarese — Forward
    1996–1998
    Giovanni Savarese scored 41 goals in 85 MLS games for the MetroStars. The Venezuelan striker was a favorite of the fans. Savarese often started games on the bench and came in at crucial moments to score.

  • Amado Guevara — Midfielder
    2003–2006
    Amado Guevara was a splendid attacking midfielder. Quick and powerful, he was nicknamed “El Lobo” (The Wolf). Guevara scored 32 goals for the MetroStars and Red Bulls.

  • Sacha Kljestan — Midfielder
    2015–2017
    Sacha Kljestan “came home” to New Jersey when he joined the Red Bulls in 2015. He had been a college star a few miles away at Seton Hall University. Kljestan’s passing and goal-scoring helped the club finish with the best record in the league in 2015.

Fun Facts

Bradley Wright-Phillips
(© Topps, Inc.)

Did You Know?

• The Red Bulls are named after a popular energy drink. The original recipe came from a beverage popular among truck drivers in Thailand.

• The club’s first coach was Eddie Firmani. Firmani had managed the New York Cosmos in the 1970s.

• In 2000, Clint Mathis became the first MLS player to score five goals in a game. He set the record against the Dallas Burn (now FC Dallas).

• In 2016, Bradley Wright-Phillips scored a hat trick (3 goals in a game) in his 100th game with the Red Bulls. The goals all came in the first 27 minutes, making it the fastest hat trick in MLS history.

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