New York’s consistently improving Jamaican midfielder Dane Richards, a speedy, but increasingly versatile and perceptive attacker, has been one of the most eye catching players in MLS this season.
Here’s Red Bull Coach Juan Carlos Osorio on Richards:
“Objectively, I think last season he has scored one goal; this season he has scored four, (he’s had) more assists and I think now he’s a player capable of coming inside. Before he was just pure pace and getting in behind so I think he has added to his game and now he is a complete player.
Here’s what Richards had to say Saturday ahead of Sunday’s MLS Cup clash against the Columbus Crew:
Question: What do you see as the Crew’s main threats?
Answer: Well, we all know they are good on set plays – in the box they try to find (MLS Defender of the Year Chad) Marshall. They’re always capitalizing, so we’ve just got to mark up in the box and try to exploit their wing backs. They’ve got some competent defenders, so we’ve just got to be disciplined and keep them off the score sheet and finish when we get our chances.”
Q: How do you think your speed matches up against them?
A: Well, my speed matches up against any team in this league. I’ve really got to use it tomorrow, got to be smart, when I choose to go, when I choose to stay back. I’ve just got to be smart hopefully, cause them some problems.
Q: How do you assess your season? It seemed like toward the end you were maturing before our eyes every game.
A: I’m happy it looked that way. … Each and every game I just tried to do better. … I started out with an injury and tried to come back from it and it was pretty hard, but I managed to get over it.
“The coaches are really happy for me and no exception tomorrow, so I just have to go out there tomorrow and do the best I can.”
Here’s what Dane Richards is capable of: