Ironman goalkeeper Luis Robles returns from injury for the New York Red Bulls when they play at the Columbus Crew on Saturday.
Robles had played an-MLS record 183 consecutive games and gone more than five seasons without missing a minute until sustaining a knee injury that forced him to miss the past three matches.
While New York (7-4-1) had a win, draw and most recently a 2-1 loss to the New England Revolution with goalkeeper Ryan Meara, coach Jesse Marsch is happy for the return of Robles.
“He looks really good, so it will be good to have him back,” Marsch said.
Meara, making his first league starts since 2015, allowed three goals and had two shutouts in his three matches.
“He’s played great,” Robles said of Meara. “He stepped into a situation where we had some very difficult games and he helped navigate us.”
Columbus (7-3-5) will be without goalkeeper Zack Steffen, who was the league’s player of the month for May when he posted a franchise-record five consecutive shutouts.
He and midfielder Wil Trapp are away with the U.S. National Team and unavailable, as they were last Saturday when the Crew overcame a 3-0 deficit in the final 23 minutes to tie Toronto FC 3-3 to extend their unbeaten streak to 4-0-4.
It was the 13th time in MLS history that a team got a result when trailing by at least three goals.
Both New York and the Crew are in busy stretches with the U.S. Open Cup beginning this week. The Red Bulls will play five games in 15 days; the Crew four in 11.
“It’s a challenge, but we won’t make an excuse,” Crew coach Gregg Berhalter said. “I think that we should be clear on that. It is a challenge, but there’s no excuse.”
—Field Level Media