Momentum from New Jersey
The Revolution are coming back bringing a point from their tightly-contested game against the Red Bulls. The draw adds to the Revs unbeaten streak on the road and has now broken the previous record of six games unbeaten. I’d almost like to repeat that phrase three more times in this sentence. The last time this team was unbeaten on the road in six games was 2008! They have definitely stepped up to be worthy of our praises this year.
The main man between the posts is definitely Matt Turner right now. He had a career-high nine saves in the NYRB game. Beyond that, he’ll be buzzing after he just signed a new undisclosed multi-year contract with New England. If I had to take a guess in the amount, yearly, it’s probably within the $150,000-$200,000 range. Brad Knighton who is his back-up is currently making $111,000 a year. I’m happy to see him happy to commit to the Revs long term.
The panther has struck again, Bou with the game tying goal against the Red Bulls. Since he joined July 10th, he now has 4 goals in 6 games and doesn’t show any signs of stopping. His soccer IQ seems to be off the charts, consistently able to get himself out of double-teams and always toying the offside line to pounce(sorry) onto the softly chipped passes over the defense. I’m excited to see what a full year with the Revs will produce.
Chicago Gets Some Luck…
The MLS Disciplinary Committee has rescinded Chicago’s Nicolas Gaitan’s red card suspension after he made a questionable tackle on the Philadelphia Union’s Jamiro Monteiro nearing half time. This is a major gain back of an attacking midfielder who has tallied up 4 goals and 7 assists this year since he joined the team. Hopefully, we can draw the ire of him again, and get him off his game.
Chicago Look To Bump Revs From Playoff Spot
After a win at home against the Philadelphia Union, the Fire will be looking to double up on those points. The Revolution are now sitting in sixth place with 35 points. Chicago is in tenth place, only two points away from the sixth spot. The game is a must win for the Revs to stay in the playoff race.
Nemanja Nikolić is a dangerous striker force waiting to come out this year. Between the past two years, he has amounted 66 regular season matches, with 39 goals total. This year, it seems he has pulled up a little lame, with 19 matches and only six goals thus far. Two of those goals came in last week’s match against the Union. He may have found his confidence again, so absolutely one to watch.
Schweinsteiger is always looking to boost his side to a win, definitely providing a few key passes this year to his teammates. We will definitely see some of his passing prowess on display and his control on the flow of the game, playing out of the back. It will be tough to get him off his game. I think over-powering the middle with two central defensive midfielders can help against this.
The Revs are confident, but wary. They pulled out a 1-1 draw against the Red Bulls last week. It was not without weakness. Our defense is still very shaky and has lost it’s vigor since losing Toni Delemea to the injury in the LAFC game. Toni is still unavailable for Saturday’s game. The shining bright from the defense was definitely Turner’s nine save game.
Edgar Castillo seemed to be very lost in the NYRB game. He was the direct reason for the Red Bulls goal. He cleared a soft ball for an easy pick to Marc Rzatkowski who controlled it and dropped it down for a beautiful strike into the back of the net. I hope at this point, after two rough games from Castillo, that Arena may think to start Jones over him, or make an earlier substitution for him. Andrew Farrell returns back to what most likely will be the center back position and I think the defense will look that much tigher for it.
Offensively, the Revs has been a force, scoring 4 goals in the past 2 games. Gustavo Bou and Carles Gil still continuing great form together with their give and go’s. I hope to see a more attacking formation this game. Arena seems to be giving the 5 at the back an experimentation while Delemea isn’t healthy. I get the idea, but the team still hasn’t figured out how defend in that formation. I would like to see a 3-4-1-2, allowing more center defensive mids, and getting away from Caldwell being the only one in the middle lane. I think Caldwell doesn’t start this game either, we should see Zahibo or Caicedo back in the middle and a stronger attacking presence on the wings.
The Revs will be back home at Gillette, which should give them a huge boost after an amazing presence at Red Bull Stadium from the fans. It looks to be a decent presence in Foxboro, coming off of the last home game containing 25,000+ fans. I don’t think we’ll see near as many this game. Nevertheless, I hope to hear the entire crowd chanting “Rev-o-lution” this game!