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Red Bulls' Michael Amir Murillo making case for larger role

Michael Amir Murillo could become a big name for Red Bulls fans sometime soon.Getty Images

Back from playing with Panama, Michael Amir Murillo could be poised for a larger role with the New York Red Bulls in the coming weeks.

In recent World Cup qualifying, Murillo made one appearance off the bench for Panama, another sign that the recently signed Red Bulls right back has a bright future. Just recently turned 21-years old, Murillo has yet to play for his new club but that could be changing in a hurry.

The timetable is for Murillo to play Wednesday in the USL with New York Red Bulls II so as to get 90 minutes. After that, it seems like an MLS debut may not be far away.

“He’s smart, so the clarity on the role is pretty good. It’s such a demanding position for us and it’s important that they’re clear on their roles so I’ve been a little bit reluctant to throw him in so that’s on me, not on him. I just want to set him up to succeed,” Red Bulls head coach Jesse Marsch said on Thursday following training.

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“I’m hopeful that if he gets the USL game under his belt then we can start to think about when’s the time to integrate him with the first team.”

Murillo was in training on Thursday with the Red Bulls, making his return from international duty. In addition Sacha Kljestan (United States) and Derrick Etienne (Haiti) both trained with the club following time spent with their respective national teams.

Quick Notes

  • Newly appointed assistant coach Bradley Carnell spent his first day with the team on Thursday, the former South African international having joined the Red Bulls staff this week. Carnell was not made available to the media following his first training session with the club, perhaps a shrewd move.
    After all, Carnell had just gotten off the airplane a couple hours earlier following a flight from South Africa. He wasted no time getting to the team’s facility and into the training session.
    “He’s a sharp guy, he’s eager and excited to be here. I think he looks at this as a big opportunity as well as a big step up in his career. He can already see that the way that things work here and the environment we have and the facilities we have are at a high level. You can see that he’s excited,” Marsch said.
    “You can see that he adds a lot because already he’s familiar with playing our way. If you ever watched him play, he was a very aggressive left back who’d go after the game, loved to tackle and loved to run. So he fits – his personality and style of play fits; his coaching style fits with who we are.”
  • As for the aforementioned Kljestan, Murillo and Etienne, Marsch said all three came back with no injury concerns. The three players trained in full in what was a light session for the team ahead of Saturday’s match at the Houston Dynamo.
  • The aeonian frustration continues for Gonzalo Veron as the Red Bulls attacker still isn’t training with the team. Comments by Marsch on Tuesday had the Argentine pegged for a return from a hamstring injury at the end of this week. But on Thursday Veron still wasn’t on the training pitch.
    “The plan was to get him running today. He’s not quite ready,” Marsch sad. “We’re hopeful for tomorrow.”
  • Saturday is not only match day for the Red Bulls but the USL team has their home opener in their spanking new digs. Red Bulls II will play their first match at Montclair State University and the refurbished and expanded MSU Soccer Park at Pittser Field. The 3,000 seat facility will also be utilized by the Montclair State men’s and women’s soccer teams, both nationally ranked Division III programs that are perennial presences in the NCAA Tournament. ​
 
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