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MLS Preview: Red Bulls eye fourth straight win

New York have been galvanised and are eyeing a fourth straight win in Major League Soccer (MLS) when they host FC Dallas on Sunday.

Since a reported training ground incident between coach Mike Petke and star Thierry Henry in late August, the Red Bulls have won three straight to go three points clear atop the MLS’ Eastern Conference.

Neither has spoken publicly about it but Petke hinted they had moved on after New York’s 2-0 win over Toronto on Saturday.

Henry scored in the win – the second game in a row in which he has netted – and some of his efforts were described as ‘phenomenal’ by the first-year coach.

“I’ve seen an improvement in the overall attitude of this team. In the overall understanding, I guess you could say,” Petke said.

“The willingness to jump on board, everybody I’m talking about, so really Thierry’s goals the last two weeks is a product of everybody behind him and the quality that he has.

“So it’s great to have him scoring two weeks in a row but I’m equally as pleased at what he’s doing aside from the goals.

“If you saw him tonight, Thierry Henry sprinting back 40 yards four or five different times into our half to defend. That’s phenomenal.”

They face a struggling Dallas side that have been in indifferent form and are sixth in the Western Conference.

Elsewhere, Montreal, who are second to New York but have two games in hand, will go into their encounter at home against Canadian-rivals Vancouver Whitecaps as favourites.

Italian veteran Marco Di Vaio has continued to lead the Impact and tops the league’s scoring charts with 18, including seven in his past five games.

Struggling Toronto FC will be aiming to end a seven-match winless run when they host Sporting Kansas City.

Western Conference battlers Chivas USA have improved and will fancy their chances of causing an upset when they travel to Houston Dynamo.

Real Salt Lake should bounce back from their loss last time out when they host the San Jose Earthquakes and the Seattle Sounders visit the Los Angeles Galaxy.

Elsewhere, the Portland Timbers face the Colorado Rapids, New England meet DC United and the Columbus Crew will do battle with Chicago Fire.

Wed 18 Sep, 2013
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