Metros head down I-95 to face United

Up Next, D.C. United: This weekend, the MetroStars will hit the road for their next game against Freddy Adu and D.C. United on Saturday (TV: ESPN2, Spanish Radio: WADO 1280 AM) at 5:00 p.m. ET. Their last encounter was at Giants Stadium on April 17th, when the Red and Black edged United 3-2 behind two Fabian Taylor strikes.

The MetroStars then come back to Giants Stadium a week later to host Landon Donovan and the San Jose Earthquakes on July 10th at 4:00 p.m. (TV: ESPN2, Spanish Radio: WADO 1280 AM).

Tickets are available for all MetroStars home games at the Continental Airlines Arena box office and at all Ticketmaster outlets. Tickets will also be available through Ticketmaster by phone for callers in New Jersey (201-507-8900), New York (212-307-7171), and for Spanish-speaking customers throughout New York and New Jersey (212-307-4757).

The Beast in the East: With the Metros' 3-2 loss against the Colorado Rapids on Wednesday, the Red and Black still stayed at the top of the Eastern Conference with 19 points. The MetroStars are two points ahead of Eastern Conference rivals, the Chicago Fire and D.C. United. Both teams have 17 points. However, the Fire have one game in hand over the MetroStars and the fourth-placed Columbus Crew (15 points) have two games in hand over the Red and Black.

Gaven Delight: MetroStars midfielder Eddie Gaven continued his hot streak for the club, scoring a 23rd minute goal in Wednesdays 3-2 loss against the Colorado Rapids. Gaven has now scored three goals in three games for the club, building from his two-goal performance on June 23rd against the Los Angeles Galaxy. On Wednesday, the 17-year-old also was called up to the U.S. Senior National Team for the squads international friendly against Poland on July 11th. If Gaven earns an appearance for the National Team in their game against Poland, he will be the fourth youngest American player to earn a senior cap. Gaven now has ten points this season.

Coincidently, the MetroStars trip to D.C. this weekend is two days shy of the one-year anniversary of Gaven's first career MLS goal. The goal came at RFK Stadium against D.C. United on July 5, 2004. The tally gave the Metros a 99th minute overtime win. Gaven also appeared in goal in that contest for one minute.

Sergeing Forward: Metrostars forward Sergio Galvan Rey scored his first career MLS goal for the team with a 53rd minute tap-in on Wednesday night. Earlier in the game, Galvan Rey earned an assist on teammate Eddie Gaven's goal in the 23rd minute garnering his first career MLS point. Galvan Rey has made eight previous appearances with the Red and Black following his move to the Metros on March 26, 2004.

Vaca Steers The Rapids: MetroStars midfielder Joselito Vaca continued his fine form against the Colorado Rapids on Wednesday, recording an assist on Eddie Gaven's 23rd minute goal. The assist gives the Bolivian eight points (two goals, four assists) in nine games against the Colorado team. It was also Vaca's first assist of the season.

Amado Continues Form: MetroStars midfielder Amado Guevara continued his fiery form for the Red and Black with an assist on Sergio Galvan Reys 53rd minute goal on Wednesday night. Earlier this week, The Professional Soccer Reporters Association (PSRA) named the Honduran MLS Player of the Week for the week ending June 27 (Week 13). The Honduran international tallied two goals and two assists for the Metros in two games on opposite coasts within a four-day stretch after returning from international duty in World Cup qualifying for his native Honduras. With his 15 points off five goals and five assists on the year, Guevara is tied with San Jose Earthquakes forward Brian Ching at the top of the MLS Budweiser Scoring leaders. He is also tied for second in assists.

Glen's Standing Tall: Although Cornell Glen has not seen much action in recent weeks for the Metros due to national team duty with his native Trinidad and Tobago team, he ranks sixth in the league in points per game. Glen averages 1.17 points per game and sits behind the L.A. Galaxy's Carlos Ruiz who leads the league with 1.56 points per game. Another Metro teammate, Amado Guevara is tied for third in the league with the San Jose Earthquakes Brian Ching, both averaging 1.25 points per game.

Shooting Away: The MetroStars are not afraid of shooting the ball. The team leads the league for most shots overall with 227. Their nearest opponent is the Kansas City Wizards with 190. In addition, the MetroStars are leading the league in shots on goal with 100 strikes eight more than the second-placed Wizards.

First Time's the Charm: The Metros are undefeated this season when scoring first. They have maintained their lead to either win or tie in five matches (May 8, 2004: 5-5 tie against San Jose Earthquakes; May 15, 2004: 1-1 tie vs. Chicago Fire; May 30, 2004 1-0 win vs. Kansas City Wizards; June 19, 2004 2-1 win vs. Los Angeles Galaxy; June 23, 2004 3-0 win @ Los Angeles Galaxy).

Giant Advantage: The MetroStars have a record of 3-2-2 in East Rutherford. They have won three times (April 17, 2004 3-2 vs. D.C. United; May 30, 2004 1-0 vs. Kansas City Wizards; June 19, 2004 2-1 vs. L.A. Galaxy), tied twice (April 25, 2004 1-1 vs. New England Revolution; May 15, 2004 1-1 vs. Chicago Fire) and lost twice (June 5, 2004 2-0 vs. Dallas Burn; June 30th 2004 3-2 vs. Colorado Rapids).

Gearing Up For United: The MetroStars are heading down to Washington D.C. to face familiar Eastern Conference rivals, D.C. United. Although the Metros trail the all-time series 14-17-2, they won their first showdown this season against United with an April 17th 3-2 win in Giants Stadium. United will have to keep an eye on Fabian Taylor, who scored two second-half goals and earned a Man-of-the-Match performance in the teams first encounter. In addition, the MetroStars hope to have midfielder Mark Lisi back from his right ankle strain, especially considering the performances against his former team. Lisi has earned six points in seven appearances against United, scoring one goal and garnering four assists. United is two points behind the Metros in the Eastern Conference standings.

Metros to Take on Charleston in Open Cup: A-League squad, the Charleston Battery earned the right to host the MetroStars in the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on July 20th with a 2-0 victory over the Wilmington Hammerheads in Charleston. The Red and Black have faced the Battery in the past, losing to them 4-1 in the 2001 Open Cup tournament.

Brazilian Birthday Boy on the Mend: MetroStars midfielder Gilberto will be celebrating his 21st birthday on July 5th (Monday). Unfortunately for the Brazilian, he will be on the sidelines for four to five months, suffering a ruptured torn posterior tibial tendon in his left ankle in last Saturday's game against the New England Revolution.

A White Curse?: Even though the MetroStars are known for their red and black kits, on some away games, they switch to their white uniforms a change which has not resulted in great success. The MetroStars are 0-3-2 when they wear their white uniforms. They are 5-2-2 when wearing their red and black-striped jerseys.

Keeping The Lead: When leading at halftime, the MetroStars are 2-0-1. Even more promising, when the MetroStars are ahead after the 75th minute, the Red and Black are 4-1-0.

Digi Makes Return: Former MetroStars midfielder Joey DiGiamarino made his Giants Stadium return, starting for his team, the Colorado Rapids on Wednesday night. DiGiamarino played 45 minutes for the Rapids in their 3-2 win over the MetroStars. DiGiamarino made 18 appearances for the Red and Black last season, starting in 16 games. He was released on June 4th by the team and picked up by the Rapids on June 18th.

Bradley Two Away From Century: MetroStars Head Coach Bob Bradley is two wins away from reaching 100 career wins. Bradley's all-time league record of 98 career regular season victories is 22 more than the closest active coach, Sigi Schmid. Schmid needs seven more to surpass Thomas Rongen (DC, NE, TB) for second place in career regular season victories.

Injury Report:

Michael Bradley: OUT - Stress Fracture of Right Talarnavicular

Gilberto: OUT - Ruptured Torn Posterior Tibial Tendon in Left Ankle

Mark Lisi: DOUBTFUL - Right Ankle Strain

Probable Starters

MetroStars

GK #1 Jonny Walker

D #3 Chris Leitch

D #23 Eddie Pope

D #12 Jeff Parke

D #21 Craig Ziadie

M #2 Ricardo Clark

M #24 Eddie Gaven

M #10 Joselito Vaca

M #20 Amado Guevara

F #9 Sergio Galvan Rey

F #13 Cornell Glen


To report a comment, mouseover or touch the comment and then click/touch the flag icon (Flag).