By DAVE MARTINEZ
Ryan Meara’s magical rookie season has come to an abrupt end.
SBI has learned that the former Red Bulls starting keeper will undergo hip surgery that will effectively end his first professional season.
“Yes, it will be a season ending (surgery),” Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe confirmed after Thursday’s training session
Meara, a New York native and Fordham University product, started 18 matches for the team this season, accumulating 1620 minutes in net, and allowing all of 27 goals against for a respectable 1.5 GAA. He picked up three clean sheets for New York en route to what was an MLS rookie of the year-caliber season. His play even caught the attention of the U-21 Irish National team earlier in the season – an opportunity he decided to forgo in order to focus on his first year in MLS.
Meara picked up the injury in a collision during a July 8th encounter against the New England Revolution.
The announcement sheds some light on a few of the Red Bulls recent moves, including the addition of the red hot Bill Gaudette last July and the surprising allocation pick up of former American international, Luis Robles.
Since becoming the team’s starter, Gaudette has played superbly for New York, leading the team with a 4-2-1 record through seven matches and earning three clean sheets in that time. The effort has been more than enough for Backe to hand the reign’s of the net to the Puerto Rican international.
“Luis (Robles) has only been here for 10 days or something like that, but Bill (Gaudette) has been playing well for us and he will still be our first choice,” Backe said.
Still, the Red Bulls boss knows he has plenty of options to play with.
“I also saw on video and I heard that Luis played phenomenal against Montreal last Tuesday with the reserves, so that’s a very good sign. And of course, we shouldn’t forget Jeremy (Vuolo) still, we have a third one in Jeremy who will improve all the time.”
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