MLS Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, July 12, 2014
(All times Eastern)
Chicago (2-4-10) at New England (7-7-2), 7:30 p.m.
Foxborough, MA (SportsNetwork.com) - The New England Revolution will hope to
find their way back to a winning formula when they host Eastern Conference
rivals Chicago Fire on Saturday at Gillette Stadium.
The Revs got off to a flying start in the early portion of the season that saw
the club rise as high as the top spot in the East, but Jay Heaps' team has
come back down to Earth as of late, winless in their last three matches across
The Revs topped the Rochester Rhinos to reach the U.S. Open Cup quarterfinals,
but followed that up with a loss to Philadelphia at home in league play, a
loss to Real Salt Lake on July 4, and another loss to Philadelphia last
Tuesday -- this time in the Open Cup quarterfinals at PPL Park.
Against RSL, New England was sloppy defensively and gave up the lead in the
35th minute as Javier Morales converted a penalty kick after Darrius Barnes
cleaned out Chris Schuler in the box.
But New England drew level two minutes later when Barnes rose above the RSL
defense to head in Chris Tierney's free kick service from 28 yards out on an
Real Salt Lake struck for the winner 25 minutes from time when Joao Plata
scored another penalty kick after Tierney was yellow carded for a rash
challenge in the box, resulting in a point to the spot from referee Allen
"It's tough. I don't think that we played well in the first half - didn't play
well enough to win the first half," Heaps said. "But I thought throughout the
game we were pretty good and did a little bit better job, but a little bit
cynical from the referee to give two penalties. It's a tough one."
"I thought we played well enough to get at least a point. We defended really
well and had plenty of chances going forward," defender A.J. Soares said. "To
get no points is super disappointing. I'm disappointed with both calls on the
penalty kicks. It's a hard one to swallow because we didn't deserve to get no
Chicago, meanwhile, will be looking for just its third win of the season
coming off a respectable 1-1 draw with the defending champions Sporting Kansas
City on Sunday.
Sporting struck first in the 33rd minute through Dominic Dwyer, but six
minutes later the Fire equalized through Mike Magee, who got on the end of
a nice, cutting ball from Alex on the left side of the penalty area and ripped
it just inside the near post.
"I thought we played well -- an even game. I think we moved the ball well. It
had been physical in the first 20 minutes of the match. We had a game plan to
come in and try to do that and find little pockets and little holes and play
in between the lines," Fire head coach Frank Yallop said. "I thought we did a
great job, we just ran out of steam.
"We had a couple injuries. Alex was off at halftime, and Jhon (Kennedy
Hurtado)'s got dizzy spells. So late in the game, when you want to make your
subs make a difference, we couldn't do that. Credit to Kansas City, they
really pushed and in the end could have won it, but I was proud of the way we
hung in there. So we could win a few more games, but we can tie them for
07/11 16:32:27 ET