3.9 Billion fans: People love Red Bull. According to our independent survey of every person on the planet, more than 3.9 billion cans of the beverage were consumed in 2012. That means 3.9 billion times people put Glucuronolactone into their bodies. That is the same Glucuronolactone that conspiracy theorist like to say that the U.S. government gave soldiers during the Vietnam War to boost morale, but really just led to brain tumors. That would boost my morale about as much as seeing Lovel Palmer’s name in the starting XI. Needless to say, the New York Red Bulls have less fans than the beverage but more fans than brain tumors.
Guys you know about: Despite years of playoff futility, there is a little known secret that MLS secretly wants the team in its largest media market to do well. They so desperately want this that every year New York actually signs guys that you have heard of despite that whole salary cap nonsense that everybody else other than LA are supposed to abide by. Thierry Henry, Juninho, and Tim Cahill are your marquee names at the moment.
Guys you know about part 2: Give us your tired, your poor, and your players with Portland connections. New York has been one of the favorite destinations for the Timbers to unload unwanted players. Kosuke Kimura and Eric Alexander are this year’s version. They join former University of Portland Pilots players Luis Robles and Heath Pearce, as well as Dax McCarty as players with ties to the Rose City.
Did you know? The corporate masters who operate the New York team also own soccer teams in Austria (first division), Germany (fourth division), Brazil (second division), and Ghana (second division).
Tell us what you think about Portland, TH14: “Their fans are just tremendous. The atmosphere there is great. They can play good football, especially in the middle.” Video here.
Hey Donovan, make sure your wall is set: At 38 years old, Juninho makes Mikael Silvestre seem like a Timbers Youth. The Brazilian has left behind a step or three in Qatar, but he can still strike a mean dead ball. How mean? Let us count the ways.
Oh Brother: Defender Rodrigo Izecson dos Santos Leite – who makes the guy who irons the name on the back of the kits happy by going by the name Digão – is the younger brother of Real Madrid’s Kaka.
Pints Up: There isn’t much to celebrate about Harrison, NJ (pop. 13,620) where the Red Bulls play, but we will salute one of the early pioneers of American beer, Peter Doelger, who brewed the good stuff there back when Juninho was a boy.
Where to send your pre-match trash talk: Twitter c/o new manager Mike Petke.
Other previews where you might learn something [Updated as they come]
- Look Ahead: Home Sweet Home [Slide Rule Pass]
- Red Bulls have many question marks entering this season [Big Apple Soccer]
- Portland Timbers vs New York Red Bulls Preview [Goal]
- MLS Week One: Fan previews [Guardian]
- New York, Portland open the season with new bosses [Fox]
- Red Bulls’ Kimura keeps focus on winning [Japan Times]
- Press Pass: Timbers set for season opener [ESPN]
- Portland vs New York Match Center [MLS]
- Henry, Juninho talk turf for Red Bulls, Timbers opener [Empire of Soccer]