April 26, 2015
RIGHT PLACE, RIGHT TIME
Felipe makes one heady play just by being there
By Michael Lewis
|Felipe: "I didn't score many, but I think it was luck."
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
HARRISON, N.J. -- Before he addressed the media after his Red Bulls came back to play the LA Galaxy to a 1-1 tie on Sunday, head coach Jesse Marsch joked about the man who helped his team salvage a point at Red Bull Arena.
"Do we have a shorter podium for Felipe?" he said about the 5-9 midfielder.
Felipe might be one of the shortest players on the team, but he certainly made one, ahem, heady play when it counted for the unbeaten side Sunday, heading home the equalizing goal in the 58th minute.
He admitted it was one of the easiest goals he has scored in his career.
Sometimes it is just about being there.
Midfielder Sal Zizzo penetrated down the left flank and sent a short cross to Bradley Wright-Phillips in the middle. Wright-Phillips headed the ball that that deflected off defender A.J. DeLaGarza to Felipe, who was standing in the right place time as the ball hit his head and went into the net from point-blank range past goalkeeper Jaime Penedo.
"I was lucky to follow the action and the ball went right to my head," he said of his first goal of the season and 13th of his Major League Soccer career. "I didn't score many, but I think it was luck."
There was some laughter from the media.
All kidding aside, folks, Marsch knows what Felipe has meant to the 3-0-3 team.
"He doesn't so many things well," he said. "He sees the game fast. His feet are sharp so in tight spots he can collect balls and see things quickly and deliver the next player. He covers so much ground. He break up so many players. He's a connector, an attacker. His engine is at a very high level."
Marsch reminded the media that the Brazilian midfielder was only 24-years-old.
"He is wise beyond his years and I think that he shows that every day he's grasping what we want to do," he said. "He is growing and I think he's going to get only better."
He might have scored the equalizer to keep the Red Bulls unbeaten, but that did not necessarily mean Felipe was satisfied.
"I think tonight we don't feel good because we could win this game," he said. "We had to win this game."