Photo by Howard C. Smith/ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
The start of preseason has come with a new deal for Jamison Olave.
The New York Red Bulls announced on Wednesday that they have signed Olave to a new contract. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the move comes three days after the Red Bulls started their 2014 preseason and following a strong first year for Olave in New York, who won the Supporters’ Shield last season with the veteran anchoring its back line.
“Jamison showed last season and throughout his MLS career that he is an elite centerback in the league and we are pleased to sign him to a new deal. His performances last year were vital in our success last year,” said Red Bulls Sporting Director Andy Roxburgh. “We look forward to Jamison’s contributions in the coming season, as he continues to be an important part of our squad.”
The 32-year-old Olave stayed relative healthy in 2013, starting in 27 of the 29 matches he played in during the regular season and leading all Red Bulls defenders with four goals. His strong performances earned him the club’s Defensive Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year awards.
As strong as Olave’s season was, he may have been at fault for the turning point of the Red Bulls’ Eastern Conference semifinals defeat to the Houston Dynamo. Up 2-1 in the first leg in Houston, the Red Bulls lost Olave for the remainder of the series after a clumsy challenge on Omar Cummings saw the Colombian defender earn a straight red card.
Houston went on to capitalize on the man advantage, scoring an equalizer at the death, before picking up a 2-1 victory in extra time in the second leg at Red Bull Arena.
What do you think of the Red Bulls signing Olave to a new contract? Like the move? Do you expect him to have another strong campaign in 2014?
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