July 27, 2012
GIVING ALL HIS HEART
And his body too as Lindpere shows he still cares how the Red Bulls perform
By Kristian R. Dyer
|Just about every game he plays, Joel Lindpere shows he bleeds Red Bulls red.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
BigAppleSoccer.com Contributing Editor
UPPER MONTCLAIR, N.J. Ė There were no handshakes, no congratulatory smiles or embraces from Red Bulls midfielder Joel Lindpere as he walked off the field last Saturday in the 87th minute of his teamís 2-0 derby win over Philadelphia. Instead, Lindpere went straight into the locker room.
It was a solid match from Lindpere, who worked effectively in the midfield for the Red Bulls and especially showed some tenacity and fighting in ball-winning. Lindpere was important in breaking up any semblance of a midfield presence for the Union and quietly pushed into the offensive third to provide overlaps and crosses. Plus, having played the full 90 minutes in the last three games, the late game reprieve should have been a welcome few minute of rest from Lindpere.
Lindpere, however, stormed off the field. But despite what appeared to be a temper tantrum, Lindpere said that he wasnít hissy.
ďNo, no, not at all. It was a great win but I was, me personally, the heat and all the injuries and stuff and we wanted to [play] safe. We stopped playing and I was mad at this. Maybe we needed more fresh legs in,Ē Lindpere said. ďSometimes weíre 2-0 up and we suddenly stop playing and we lose possession and all the stuff like this. Thatís sometimes normal but when you have a lot of games in a row and itís a lot of heat and you get tired, you can be frustrated also. Itís not a big deal.Ē
By that point in the match and perhaps predictably so, the Red Bulls were conceding turf to the Union as the home side sought to protect its two-goal cushion. At that point in the match, coach Hans Backe had used just one sub in the 16th minute to replace an injured Brandon Barklage. This, despite the fact that the Red Bulls had played two games in the previous six days, all afternoon matches in high temperature. The team was tired.
The wear and tear was showing, Lindpere said.
ďI was the second sub and thatís why maybe we needed this win against Philly to go atop of the East," he said. "But now we won and itís done. Suddenly when we score 2-0, it has happened before, somehow we stopped playing. Then I was getting like ĎWe run and we donít do anything.í Then I was getting frustrated and the coaches had to change me out earlier.
ďNormally I donít sit, when itís so hot, I donít sit out. I was so tired, I was totally dead. Of course I go straight in the locker room. But I was more angry with the game and how many games, at the end of the games, after 60 minutes we stop playing until we bring the fresh legs in.Ē
As far as recent trade rumors, including one linking him to FC Dallas in a swap for Brek Shea, Lindpere played it cool. When asked by BigAppleSoccer.com if he had a no-trade clause, Lindpere said ďI donít know about these things.Ē
ďI donít know anything, I donít know anything,Ē Lindpere said about possible moves away from New York.
ďWe lead [the Eastern Conference] and Iím OK. I donít know what the future brings but I donít know anything about these things. I heard also some people say that somebody comes from somewhere but itís not a big deal for me. I think Iím old enough to see how the things go and where I would love to play and where I want to play. I donít care about this; there are so many rumors about everything.Ē