Henry leads Red Bulls over Crew with goal, three assists

Thierry Henry

By RYAN TOLMICH

HARRISON, N.J. — Soccer may be a young man’s game, but New York Red Bulls star Thierry Henry demonstrated that there’s still some spectacular skill remaining in his 36-year-old legs.

Henry led the way with a goal to go with a trio of assists Saturday as the Red Bulls took down the visiting Columbus Crew by a 4-1 scoreline at Red Bull Arena.

The Red Bulls opened the scoring in the 17th minute by way of Major League Soccer leading goalscorer Bradley Wright-Phillips, whose 15th of the season gave the hosts the initial 1-0 lead.

The goalscoring sequence was initiated by Henry, who played a give-and-go with Eric Alexander on his way through the Crew box. The Frenchman then tapped a cross towards the center of the box and into the path of Wright-Phillips, who has now scored six in as many games.

“You see today the assist he put on a plate for me,” Wright-Phillips said of Henry’s passing. “He did it for two other plays today. It makes it so much easier playing with a guy of that class.”

After taking the lead, the Red Bulls faced wave after wave of Crew attacks, but the hosts were able to withstand pressure until the 39th minute, when substitute Adam Bedell tied things up with his first career MLS goal. Bedell, who entered the game in the 25th minute to replace an injured Jairo Arrieta, fired a shot past Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles from just outside the box to tie things at one.

“It was really good,” Bedell said. “IT was kind of a surprise getting in with Jairo going down, but you got to be ready. I showed that I was.”

“I think it’s great that he got off the mark and he got a goal,” said Crew head coach Gregg Berhalter. “He’s a good finisher. We need to keep creating opportunities for him because he can finish.”

The deadlock remained for just six minutes, as Henry restored the Red Bull lead just before the referee’s halftime whistle. This time, it was Wright-Phillips who played instigator, as the Red Bulls forward fired off two shots that were spectacularly saved and blocked away. The ball fell into the path of Henry at the top of the box and the 36-year-old calmly placed the ball into the right side of the net. After the finish, Henry appeared visibly frustrated, going so far as to scold his back line for the goal conceded just a few minutes prior.

“I couldn’t tell you word for word,” Robles said when asked about Henry’s halftime message to the team. “It’s just not good enough… It just got to a point where he couldn’t take it and I’m glad. I’m glad that he lost it like that because they guys fed off of it and that’s why we were a lot more efficient in the second half.”

“We’ve been doing that all season: conceding goals like this,” Henry said. “Enough is enough. We managed to comeback today, and a lot of time in so many games this year we couldn’t… We cannot carry on giving goals away. We have to do better as a team, period.”

The former Arsenal star made drove his team to better play, making his mark just 11 minutes after reemerging from halftime by picking up another assist. Henry placed a through ball right onto the feet of a streaking Lloyd Sam, whose clinical curler pushed the lead to 3-1.

Henry picked up one more assist for good measure in stoppage time by finding a cutting Alexander down the left side. Alexander timed his run perfectly, beating the Crew trap to get in alone to push the lead to 4-1.

Meanwhile, Henry picked up his 37th career assist, which sees him become the franchise’s all-time leading assist getter. Despite obtaining the record, the much-decorated Henry chose to focus more on how the team needs to focus on improvement

“You should always take better criticism when you win,” Henry said. “Another day, before the (Philadelphia Union) game we maybe can talk about that, but my mind is not on right now.We won. That’s the most important thing.”

With the victory, the Red Bulls are now unbeaten in their last five MLS contests, having picked up 9 points throughout that stretch. Meanwhile, the Crew see their streak of four consecutive draws snapped with the loss.

Watch the match highlights below:

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30 Responses to Henry leads Red Bulls over Crew with goal, three assists

  1. Pat says:

    Right after his goal, the camera shows Henry walking back to center, shaking off a celebrating teammate, and yelling at someone… My lip-reading is only so so, but it looks a lot like he’s saying “Do Your F***ing Job!” to someone…

    Anyone know what that was about?

    • Dan in New York says:

      That was directed at the beer servers at Red Bull Arena. They were slow, as usual.

    • Georkt says:

      I think it was Olave but I’m not sure. All I know is Olave was a monster in the 2nd half.

    • Vic says:

      Not sure what he said but Henry yells at teammates all the time in practice. Since he’s not
      Coming back next season he ‘s recently starting yelling more at teammates. The only people he won’t yell at are Peguy(close friend from France) and Segaya because Segaya is big and crazy and Henry is scared of him.

      • Chris says:

        Nice of you to fabricate this entire post.

        • Vic says:

          I attend Red Bulls practices. Post your email on here and I will send you some pictures if you require proof, otherwise keep your false accusations to yourself.

      • slowleftarm says:

        I haven’t attended any practices but if what Vic posted were true I wouldn’t be surprised in the least. Henry appears to me to be an absolutely terrible teammate. He’s still one of the best players in the league, even though he’s not at the same level as 2-3 years ago, but I won’t miss him when he’s gone. That is, assuming RBNY signs a comparable DP to replace him, which should be doable.

        He brings zero joy or enthusiasm to the game, goes out of his way to show up teammates and acts like he’s doing everyone a huge favor by being there. Contrast that to Tim Cahill who’s basically the opposite.

    • ernj says:

      His (not very kind) words were directed at MIazga for his sloppy play. Gave the team the hairdryer treatment at the half and it definitely had an impact. Much tidier, particularly when Dax came on.

  2. shockedandawed says:

    Red bull offense looked great. Defense, aside from Olave looked pretty poor. Exciting team to watch and definitely looking forward to the Wednesday game on espn2.

  3. Jamestony says:

    If red bull let the tenure of one of soccers greatest player go to waste by not getting him a decent supporting cast, they deserve the loss of every fan who jumps ship to NYCFC . Watching how Henry get frustrated at his inept teammates make me cringe . Galaxy got good layers around Beckham and Donovan and won a few things . Why can’t red bull do the same for a legend ?

    • Georkt says:

      Anyone who jumps ship is not a fan

    • beto says:

      Henry is still an amazing player. Finisher, passer, creator!

      BWP looks like the real deal this year but I agree they should go all in this year and add a 3rd DP

      Really wish this was the team Michael Bradley was playing for!

  4. Tyler says:

    Should the axe fall for Berhalter? Crew fan here, and I’m simply not sure. But one win in fifteen games has to make any seat hot.

    • beto says:

      Imo Crew have looked a lot better than their record shows, plus minus Higuin no real game changers on that roster. Beerholder is a long term coach and a key piece to the club’s long term plan.

      Id say put short term results aside.

  5. PauseTheGameRealQuick says:

    Titi still the most skilled player in MLS.

  6. bryan says:

    Henry is a beast but he looks so disinterested and annoyed.

    • TomG says:

      Ha! It takes talent to contradict yourself in such a brief post! Well done. ;) if you’re annoyed and screaming at your teammates for their lack of attention, then, by definition, you are not disinterested.

      • bryan says:

        He looked disinterested. Didn’t say he was. And I am specifically referring to his lack of a reaction on the goals.

  7. cformusic says:

    as somewhat of a NYRB fan..overall i haven’t enjoyed the Henry era..yes he’s phenomenally skilled..but i just don’t understand his constant petulance and annoying behavior during goal celebrations..when he makes the assist he never immediately runs over to the goal scorer: he always stands his ground with the expectation that the celebration will come to him..and in general he’s always scowling at his teammates..you would think by now he understands what he’s gotten himself into and embrace it

  8. slowleftarm says:

    And another thing about that petulant primadonna. RBNY went to Seattle late last season when RBNY and Seattle were 1-2 in the Supporters Shield race with a few games left. Not only can’t he play because of the turf excuse, he can’t even be bothered to get on a plane and go to the game. Seriously, the millions this guy is being paid, he’s the captain, and he can’t even show up?

  9. Dawwilly says:

    I agree he looks totally annoyed. The Crew were horrific on defense, but Henry looks as if he has been forced to play in somewhat weekend pickup game arranged by his in-laws. His face says just get it over with and send me back to the beach club where I can dine on some non-pastuerized cheese, drink $500 Bourdeaux, and get my feet massaged. He brushed off the teammate jumping on his back after the goal he scored like the guy was an annoying kid. I think MLS should really focus on developing and playing as many Yedlin’s (types as possible and sprinkle in a few guys like Obafemi Martins. Trawling for non-named Euro talent and high priced guys like Henry who don’t enjoy the league doesn’t do much for the long-term.