For the first part of June, New York City will have to make do without Mix Diskerud.
Who could blame the guy? When Jurgen comes calling, you'd best pick up that phone.
The U.S. men will play two tough friendlies in Europe with Mix in tow: June 5th against the Netherlands in Amsterdam, and June 10th in Cologne versus Die Mannschaft, the defending World Cup champions.
Though it means a New York City squad already wracked by the injury bug must rotate its ranks yet again, fans of the Bronx Blues ought not be disheartened. Rather, there is every reason to be excited.
We heard it straight from Jason Kreis following Saturday's draw at Yankee Stadium: the gaffer told Joe Tolleson & Ian Joy of the YES Network that fan favorite Kwadwo Poku is likely to start in Mix's absence, and, when questioned about the future of Tommy McNamara by our own Raf Noboa y Rivera, Kreis noted that the Mullet Man's big chance is right around the corner as well.
Kreis on YES: there's a chance Poku will start next week. #NYCvHOU— Hudson River Blue (@hudsonriverblue) May 31, 2015
JK: I think we’re close on McNamara starting.— Hudson River Blue (@hudsonriverblue) May 31, 2015
How does Hudson River Blue feel about these statements?
It's about damn time. Winless in eleven, what does this team really have to lose?
Kreis has declared over and over again that this team isn't very good when it plays tentatively. To the point-- in the earliest stages of NYCFC's season, two young players distinguished themselves through their ability to change basically the entire complexion of the team with an infusion of aggression and intent off the bench: Poku and Khiry Shelton. The attack-minded Shelton has ascended to first-team status by his physicality and relentless running, but Poku has yet to make his debut as a starter.
Sometimes, though, you just need somebody -- in the words of former U.S. National Team coach Bruce Area -- who tries shit.
Well, the eye don't lie: in the closing minutes of Saturday's 1-1 draw against Houston, a marauding Poku nearly manufactured a miraculous result:
As for McNamara, he's had even less time to feature, logging just 41 total minutes over three appearances off the bench. With such a mess of a midfield, however, it's hard to figure why he's been held back. His inventiveness on the ball and undying will to race forward from the middle earned him widespread praise as he rose up the college ranks and sprang into MLS.
In his rookie season, McNamara famously fought his way into the starting lineup at Chivas USA, featuring as both a withdrawn striker and an attacking midfielder.
And T-Mac did something that Khiry Shelton couldn't do: he scored in his MLS debut.
NYCFC needs to play fearless and fast. Given the lack of results, why not roll out the young guns?
JK: "We’re not a good team when we sit back... We're a better team when we press, flying guys forward and taking chances." #NYCFC— Sam Dunn (@RealFakeSamDunn) May 31, 2015
That statement makes me think of two guys in particular.
There's a real opportunity created by Mix's absence. So, let's fly forward, shall we?