June 16, 2016
ALMOST A FULL DECK
Marsch's action live up to his words as he uses virtually a regular Starting XI vs. Rhinos
ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- Actions certainly speak louder than words.
|Jesse Marsch: "We're still an organization that doesn't have enough trophies in the trophy case. So we look at every tournament as a chance to put one in there."
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
Many Major League Soccer coaches claim the Lamar Hunt/U.S. Open Cup is important for their teams, but they deploy a second-team lineup and wind up exiting the competition earlier than planned.
Then there's Red Bulls head coach Jesse Marsch, who used a Starting XI that was essentially his team's Starting XI this MLS season.
The Red Bulls used nine regulars in their 1-0 fourth-round win over the Rochester Rhinos Wednesday night.
The only two "outsiders" were midfielder Sean Davis and rookie defender Justin Bilyeu. Defender Gideon Baah and midfielder Gonzalo Veron, who were sidelined with hamstring injuries earlier this season, also featured.
"I think from the inside the players really want to take this tournament seriously and go after that and win a trophy," Marsch told reporters after the victory. "Certainly as an organization we do. We're still an organization that doesn't have enough trophies in the trophy case. So we look at every tournament as a chance to put one in there. so, we wanted to put a good team on the field. We knew we would also have a good bench so we could go to guys who could help."
It was the Red Bulls' first action in 2 1/2 weeks since the Copa America Centenario break and Marsch was pleased with the effort and outcome.
"It also was important after the two weeks off, get a good game under our belt for a lot of our regular guys," he said. "I give credit to Rochester. They made us earn it. They didn't give too much away. We didn't have too many chances. They competed hard, they battled and we're lucky to get out of here with a win."
The Red Bulls plan to fight battles on four fronts this season: MLS regular season, MLS Cup playoffs, the CONCACAF Scotiabank Champions League and the Open Cup.
While Marsch used primarily a first-team squad against the Rhinos, he realized that he will have to call in many players to survive what will be an extremely busy summer and year.
"We tried to build the team that way this year so that we have a lot of quality players at every position so that we can go after all three," he said. "Certainly, we've been tested in the back early on. But I think it will wind up being a good thing for us. Now that we're on a little bit of a roll and we've got things moving in the right direction, now that some of our young guys have experience, that means any time we call on guys, they should have confidence and understanding what their role is about and be able to perform."
Prior to the match, Marsch asked goalkeeper Luis Robles to talk to the team. The veteran keeper admitted his coach caught him a bit off guard, not that Robles is shy with public speaking.
Asked what he said to his teammates, Robles replied, "We want to win this thing. When we play opponents such as Rochester in venues such as Rochester, it's going to be a tough challenge. The first 15 minutes if we can come out, just effort, effort, effort, then sooner or later the quality we come out. That's exactly what we did.
"We advanced to the next round, so we're pleased with that. We look forward to the MLS schedule, but we want to win everything. It's not like we're going to come out and go through the motions. We want to win Open Cup, we want to advance in the Champions League. We want to get into the playoffs and hold up MLS Cup. In order to have that sort of ambition, you have to have that commitment and the work rate and i think the guys are following through with that."