With Emil Forsberg questionable and others out, Red Bulls embrace opportunity for others to step up

Red Bulls
Photo courtesy of the New York Red Bulls

Dealing with an injury to his right foot that held him out of the New York Red Bulls’ previous match on Saturday night, star midfielder Emil Forsberg partook in individual, indoor training on Monday ahead of his side’s mid-week match on Wednesday at Montreal.

He is considered questionable for the match where the team will decide his status following Tuesday’s practice, according to head coach Sandro Schwarz.

Forsberg suffered the injury while on international duty with the Sweden national team during a friendly on July 8 against Serbia. He has missed each of the Red Bulls’ two previous matches — a loss to the New England Revolution and the goalless draw on Saturday night at Red Bull Arena against Nashville SC. 

Emil Forsberg Red Bulls

His absence during that stretch has been the most glaring for a team that has been without some of its most important contributors. Lewis Morgan is also on international duty with the Scottish national team at Euro 2024 and starting goalkeeper Carlos Coronel is with the Paraguayan national team for Copa America 2024. Defender Andres Reyes and midfielder Peter Stroud have also been dealing with injury ailments.

It has forced Schwarz to turn to players deeper on the depth chart, giving them an opportunity to make a positive impression on the organization. Goalkeeper Ryan Meara got just his third start of the season in place of Coronel and recorded a clean sheet. Midfielder Cameron Harper started for the fourth time and had three of New York’s 22 shot attempts. Striker Cory Burke, who has struggled to stay healthy and in form, came off the bench to play 18 minutes — his most in a match since March

“It’s a very long season and the rule is clear that you are playing during these national breaks, these tournaments,” Schwarz said. “It’s our responsibility to find solutions. I think in our last game we found very good solutions where we could create big chances and good moments for us to score. For sure, Emil and Lewis and Carlos are important players for us, but it’s important to not lose the energy or think about how we’d play with these players. This is not the situation. I have a job to find the best solutions.”

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