HANOVER, N.J. – In New York Red Bulls II’s 2016 USL home opener, many young starlets shined bright, but none brighter than Brandon Allen. The rookie Homegrown Player enjoyed a dream professional debut against Toronto FC II, scoring two goals in the second half to save a point for NYRB II.
Allen, a native of Old Bridge, N.J., had, “very proud,” family members in the crowd for his professional debut. The natural-born goal scorer and former academy player, who scored 28 goals in 24 games during the 2010-11 U.S. Soccer Development Academy season, the most goals scored by a player in the academy that year, elaborated on what it meant for him to score in front of family for his home club.
“I was happy to get my first two pro goals and then just having my family in the stands means a lot to me,” said Allen. ”Being at home was really cool so I look forward to the next game for sure and hopefully I can keep scoring goals for the team.”
If he does, it will be increasingly difficult to be left out the first team lineup.
In college, Allen set the program record for career goals at Georgetown with 50 goals. After scoring twice in the home opener, the young forward aims to keep up the good form and work his way into Jesse Marsch’s first team plans.
“I plan to hopefully move up, but you’ve got to move up the ladder,” Allen said. “I’m trying the best I can to make the 18-man roster and hopefully I can make it sometime soon, so we’ll see.”
Despite being named to the USL Team of the Week, the rookie Homegrown Player was quick to credit the hard work his teammates put in.
“It’s awesome, but I also have to give a lot of credit to my teammates,” Allen said. “They put all the work in with me so I think they deserve as much credit as I do.”
He also reiterated his postgame words of praise, singling out Derrick Etienne Jr., who drew the penalty kick, which led to his first goal.
“I have to give Derrick credit for getting the PK and putting in the hard work beforehand,” Allen said. “It was good to come out with a tie and I was happy to see that we could come back from halftime being down 2-0, but hopefully we can get the ‘W’ on Saturday.”
New York Red Bulls II returns to action this weekend on Saturday, April 2, on the road against Louisville City FC at 3 p.m. ET (WATCH: NewYorkRedBulls.com/Live). Red Bulls II return home to Red Bull Arena the following weekend on Sunday, April 10, where they will face Bethlehem Steel FC at 7:30 p.m. (TICKETS).