Revolution Grab First Win of the Year at Home
Photo Credit - MLS Soccer
The New England Revolution hosted Minnesota United FC on Saturday for their fifth game of the 2019 Major League Soccer campaign
The Revolution had yet to win a game, having drawn the first game of the season and losing the next three in a row. It was getting out of hand for the team as they were sitting dead last in the MLS Eastern Conference on a single point.
With many questions around whether the team could get their first win, head coach Brad Friedel decided to change things up in the lineup, opting to start Juan Agudelo, DeJuan Jones, Scott Caldwell, Jalil Anibaba, Andrew Farrell, and Cody Cropper this week over Cristian Penilla, Diego Fagundez, Luis Caicedo, Wilfred Zahibo, Antonio Delamea Mlinar, and Brad Knighton.
Fridel’s changes seemed to bring new life to the lineup as they were full of energy and confidence in the early stages of the game. It didn’t take long for them to get on the scoresheet either as Carles Gil played a beautiful ball to the far post for Anibaba’s diving header to give the Revs an early 1-0 lead in the 10th minute of the game.
But Minnesota United would get their chance quickly after as Michael Mancienne would be called for a handball in the area following a Video-Assistant-Referee (VAR) review, giving Minnesota a penalty in the 26th minute. Their star man Darwin Quintero would put the penalty shot away easily, sending Cropper the wrong way and drawing the game level at 1-1.
Both teams continued to challenge throughout the game, but it would be the Revolution that seemed to control the game. Neither teams would capitalize before going into halftime.
It would take 17 minutes into the second half for New England to finally take the lead after consistent attacking pressure in the half. Jones would play a great ball through to the oncoming run of Teal Bunbury who’s scuffed shot would turn into the perfect assist to Brandon Bye at the far post who slotted the ball perfectly towards the goal to take the 2-1 lead in the 62nd minute of the game.
The Revolution continued to dominate the ball following the goal, with Minnesota unable to capitalize on the few chances they had in the attacking third. New England would get their first three points of the season as the final whistle was blown, giving them four points after five games played and currently the 10th spot in the Eastern Conference.
New England heads to Columbus, Ohio on April 6 for their next match against the Columbus Crew with a 7:30 pm kickoff and a chance for Friedel’s side to grab back-to-back wins.