Where Did the Revolution Fall Apart?
Photo Credit: Jon Strauss
The New England Revolution are sitting in 10th place in the East right now.
— matthewskillin (@skillsmatt15) July 14, 2017
They are unable to find their winning ways again. There are musings of Twitter calling for Mike Burns and Jay Heaps to be fired. The team has a record of 6-5-9. The other explanation of the struggles is the players and their inability to perform. There are two games that truly show the deep, dark hole that New England and it’s players are choosing to hide in right now.
5/31/2017 New England Revolution @ New York City FC 2-2
First and most importantly, this is when Xavier Kouassi picked up a quad injury that set him out of games for the next four to six weeks. He is a powerhouse and a commander when he is out on the field. His presence is always missed. Secondly, this game also shows an inability to defend. The Revolution did go out this preseason and find themselves a couple defenders in Benjamin Angoua and Antonio Delemea. The game shows that the defense still has no clue how to work together three months into the season. For an experienced team with a seasoned coach, this should never be happening. It still continues to this point.
To add insult to injury (literally), Kei Kamara last goal scored before Saturday’s game was in the 24th minute of this tilt. He has not performed up to par with his 22 goal 2015 season with Columbus. It’s starting to seem like his purchase was not worth the money, time or effort put into him.
4/29/2017 New England Revolution @ Seattle Sounders 3-3
Purely, this game shows the depressive state that the Revolution are in right now. The team put themselves up 3-0 by the 54th minute. They allowed three goals from the 75th minute on until the 94th minute end of game. The problem still exists today of allowing a team who is down and out to crawl back into the game. The past two New York Red Bulls game show this same style of play. They cannot continue to allow goals scored after the team has put the work in to win. The Revolution have 33 goals scored, while allowing 34 in only 20 games. They need a better built defense. Delemea and Farrell’s usual hard work will only help if Angoua does the same.
The center backs – Angoua and Delemea – are completely divergent. Delemea is a captain-type defender. He is strong willed and able to make calm, collected passes from the back. Angoua is completely undisciplined. He is strong, but unable to make smart passes from the back. He recently received a red card for touching another player’s face in the U.S. Open Cup July 13th. The penalty allowed the Red Bulls to find enough space to score the game winner and only goal all game.
The game against LA on July 22nd was no different than either of these games. They can score as many goals as they want but if they can’t put in the work on defense, the team will not always win games. The Galaxy were able to put three goals past the defenders without a single body being on a goal scorer. There are basics to the game of soccer that it seems that the back line does not understand as a whole. I would attribute the lack of defensive prowess to the Revolution depth chart. There is not enough talent on the defensive end to push players to become better at their craft. The struggle of this season thus far is directly related to a lack of true depth in our roster. If the Revolution have a talented midfielder like Kouassi on the field, they need to have a similarly skilled player to field in his place in the case of injury or red card.
To spur on the downhill spiral, the Revolution are still without any signings since the transfer window opened July 10. The only news on the transfer window page on mlssoccer.com is a quote from Mike Burns, the team’s GM, saying he wants players that “can come in and start or seriously compete for starting spots out of the gate.”