It was not immediately not known for how long Gonzalo Veron will be sidelined. He will he evaluated Friday. (Russell Teibert/USA Today Sports)

By Michael Lewis

Front Row Soccer Editor

Well prior to the result of the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal second leg Thursday, the Red Bulls suffered their first loss of the season as forward Gonzalo Veron was forced from the game in only the eighth minute.

Veron suffered a leg injury in the 2-0 defeat to the Vancouver Whitecaps at B.C. Place in Vancouver. He was holding his right leg as he left the game and will be evaluated Friday.

At the time, Red Bulls head coach Jesse Marsch did not know how long that the Argentine forward would be sidelined.

“It’s never easy when a guy goes down early because it changes some of the game plan,” Marsch said at the press conference. “With Gonzalo, we’re hopeful that it’s not too bad.”

Veron teamed with striker Bradley Wright-Phillips up front as the Red Bulls have gone from a one-forward strategy to a two-man approach this season.

“You could see that he was very emotional that he was not able to continue in this match,” Marsch said. “We’re hopeful that it’s not a major injury, one that keeps him out for a short amount of time.”

Derrick Etienne replaced Veron.

Marsch said he thought Etienne “had a pretty good match.”

New York kicks off its 22nd Major League Soccer season at Atlanta United Sunday.

“Not ideal,” Marsch said of the injury. “But we have to move on.”

Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at