There have been few better games this season from New York Red Bulls forward Thierry Henry than the one he played tonight. The mercurial forward played out of his skin tonight, providing one goal and three assists in a 4-1 drubbing of bottom-of-the-table Toronto FC.
Toronto, a team who has been in dismal form throughout the MLS season, started the game off quickly and quickly silenced the home crowd with a strike from Ryan Johnson put the visitors up by one over their hosts. This lead was to be short-lived though, unfortunately for the struggling Canadian team.
The Red Bulls were constantly on the front foot throughout the game after that, as they dominated the limping Toronto team in just about every department, completely controlling the game and taking it right to the goal mouth on several occasions. Marcus Holgersson opened up the scoring off an Henry-crafted corner, steering it home for New York.
Kenny Cooper was the main marksman for the Red Bulls, however, despite the immaculate game being played by his world-renowned French counterpart. The big American was a constant goal-scoring threat, nearly doubling the lead two minutes after Holgersson’s strike. His efforts were to be rewarded soon after, however, as he connected with Henry and guided a shot into a wide-open net a mere 14 minutes later. It would take another 61 minutes of plugging away and continually pressing the Toronto defense, but Cooper’s night was to get better, as he doubled up his own personal tally to help seal the three points with a 3-1 lead.
Former Evertonian, Tim Cahill had his own chances on the night, though, and really should have added to his New York goal account after halftime, having two close attempts at the goal, one of which was turned into the mitts of Toronto ‘keeper, Tally Hall.
The night truly belonged to Thierry Henry, though, as the former Arsenal man added icing to the victory cake with a superb strike in stoppage time to seal up a Man of the Match performance. His three assists, two to Cooper, one to Holgersson, and his magnificent strike at the end of the game emphasized the dominance of the home side, as they walked out of Red Bull Arena with all three points and a brilliantly played match to boost confidence ahead of the impending playoff games.
The next game for New York will be played at home next Thursday, October 6th, against fellow playoff candidates Chicago Fire. Toronto FC will be hoping to rebound from this big loss with their next match at home against DC United, which will also be played next Thursday.