Tag Archive | "preseason"

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TMR Episode 29 – The Midnight Ride vs the Midnight Ramble

Posted on 11 March 2011 by Hank Alexandre

In this slightly shortened episode, Hank is once again joined by New England Soccer Today’s Brian O’Connell as well as Bob Madaio from the Soccer Soap Box, as they ramble on about the New England Revolution in their final week of preseason training.

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Revs 1, Crew 3

Posted on 10 March 2011 by Hank Alexandre

The New England Revolution fell to the Columbus Crew last night by a score of 3-1 in the opening game of the Atlanta Pro Soccer Challenge.

Columbus came out of the gate looking to shake things up from their defeat against the Revs just days before in Chattanooga where they lost 2-1, starting only 2 of the 11 players from that line-up.

A series of defensive lapses gave the Crew an early lead as rookies Bernardo Anor and Tommy Heinemann got Columbus on the score sheet early.  Anor eluded defenders to head in a free kick from Robbie Rogers in the 16th minute, and Heinemann capitalized on a flubbed back pass from Revolution rookie A.J. Soares less than a minute later.

Heinemann, who joined the Crew in January after playing for a number of years in the USL, combined with Anor early in the second half to score his third goal in 2 games against the Revolution, giving the Crew a 3-0 lead. The Revolution would score in the 62nd minute, with Stolica, who had missed an earlier opportunity, driving home a well set up goal via the hard work of second year man, Zack Schilawski.

The Revolution, who started 8 of the same players who played on Sunday, made a number of substitutions midway through the second half, looking to add some fresh legs into the attack.  Sainey Nyassi, who scored in his previous two games, almost drove home his third just minutes after coming on for Ryan Kinne in the 64th minute, but his effort went to naught as he caught the wrong side of the side netting.

Coach Nicol shook things up further by opting for more speed and subbing out left back Didier Domi in favor of young Michael Augustine in the 77th minute.  The Revs however could not mount the attack needed to come back, and suffered their first loss of the preseason.

The Atlanta Pro Soccer Challenge continues on March 11th, with Columbus playing their third game in a week against new Eastern Conference hopefuls, the Houston Dynamo.  The Revs will round out their preseason on Sunday the 13th in the final game of the challenge, when they face the Dynamo at 3:00 ET (game will be aired live on CSN).  The Revs will then travel home to New England before heading out to Los Angeles, to face the LA Galaxy on Sunday the 20th.


New England Revolution vs. Columbus Crew

March 9, 2011 – Kennesaw State University Soccer Stadium (Kennesaw, Ga.)

Scoring Summary:

CLB – Bernardo Anor (Robbie Rogers) 16
CLB – Tom Heinemann (unassisted) 17
CLB – Tom Heinemann (Bernardo Anor) 53
NE – Ilija Stolica (Zack Schilawski) 62

New England Revolution: Matt Reis, Didier Domi (Michael Augustine 77), A.J. Soares, Franco Coria, Zak Boggs, Chris Tierney, Shalrie Joseph, Stephen McCarthy (Pat Phelan 64), Ryan Kinne (Sainey Nyassi 64), Zack Schilawski, Ilija Stolica (Kenny Mansally 64)

Substitutes Not Used: Bobby Shuttleworth, Darrius Barnes, Ryan Cochrane

STATS: Shots: 8; Shots on Goal: 4; Saves: 3; Corner Kicks: 7; Offside:  2; Fouls Committed: 6


Columbus Crew: William Hesmer (Alex Riggs 60), Korey Veeder, Julius James (Josh Gardner 46), Chad Marshall (Ben Sippola 46), Josh Williams, Robbie Rogers (Dilly Duka 46), Eric Gehrig, Leandre Griffit (Santiago Prim 60), Bernardo Anor (Justin Meram 60), Jeff Cunningham (Andy Adlard 46), Tom Heinemann (Bernardo Anor 89)

STATS: Shots: 11; Shots on Goal: 8; Saves: 5; Corner Kicks: 1; Offside: 2; Fouls Committed: 5

Misconduct Summary:

NE – Franco Coria (caution) 78

NE – A.J. Soares (caution) 90

Referee: Hilario Grajeda
Weather: Cloudy, 55 degrees

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Revs ramping up for regular season

Posted on 04 March 2011 by Matty Jollie

After a training trip to Orlando that saw the New England Revolution post a 3-0-0 record as well as a completely clean opponent’s scoresheet, the focus now shifts to a journey into the beautiful state of Georgia where the team’s objectives will change, and the competition will certainly be tougher.

While the Floridian expedition was clearly more of an exploratory exercise into the team’s depth and youth, this next trip will be highlighted by more of the familiar faces, playing in their familiar roles.  As MLS First Kick is merely weeks away (read that line again and try to contain your excitement), this trip will play a huge part in defining the Revs’ identity as a unit, and will have a big say in how the club performs in the early stages of the MLS season.

What to Expect From the Revs

Without question, the first thing that will jump out at you will be the difference in the squad itself. Without getting into all of the off the field issues of the previous trip, suffice it to say the team will once again have captain Shalrie Joseph, as well as defender Kevin Alston at their disposal after their absence in Orlando. In addition to regaining Joseph and Alston, the team will also get a look at new signings Ousmane Dabo and Franco Coria against MLS opposition.

With the addition of those four players alone, you can assume the quality of play could only improve, and it will also open the team up to experimenting with different formations and combinations all over the field (Nicol had previously hinted at attempting to play a 3-5-2). Given the options that Nicol will now have at several positions, this trip will go along way in answering several question marks about the potential starting XI on opening night, not the least of which is “where will the goals be coming from?”.

While the Serbian duo of Ilica Stolica and Marko Perovic will most likely play a starring role, it is the supporting cast that still seems slightly hazy as the team heads to Georgia. Finding a strike partner for Stolica remains a priority, as well as stabilizing a central midfield that at times last season had tremendous difficulty not only winning possession, but maintaining it.

In addition to the battle for playing time at striker, another intriguing storyline is who will partner in the center of the Revs defense. With Darrius Barnes seemingly winning one of the spots, it will be up to the likes of Ryan Cochrane, Franco Coria, and first-round pick A.J. Soares to decide who will be the that second center back alongside Barnes.

With plenty of questions that need answers, the Revs are more than eager to test themselves against MLS opposition as it gives them a true litmus test as to where they stand at this point in the preseason. As March 20th approaches it’s important for the team to not only find an identity, but to establish a solid squad rotation that will keep the players fresh and healthy as the season progresses. Look for a more veteran-laden lineup from Steve Nicol as the trip winds down, and certainly pay special attention to the final match of the trip on Sunday, March 13th against the Houston Dynamo, as that is the final match of the Revs’ preseason and coach Steve Nicol’s final chance to tweak his lineup in live situations ahead of the opener against Los Angeles.

What to Expect From the Revs’ Opponents

The Revolution will play three matches on this trip, two against the Columbus Crew, and one against rivals Houston Dynamo. The first match is against the Columbus Crew this Sunday, and comes on the heels of the Crew’s exit from the CONCACAF Champions League at the hands of Real Salt Lake earlier in the week. This is a Columbus side that have had an interesting preseason, trying to inject 15 newcomers into the club system while maintaining a high level of play in an important competition. Expect the Crew to rest most of the players that played a major part in the Champions’ League Quarterfinal, which will give rising stars like Rich Balchan and Cole Grossman yet another opportunity to impress.

Look for the Crew to field a slightly more aggressive, first XI-minded lineup when the two teams hook up again three days later as part of the “Atlanta Pro Soccer Challenge Cup”. While the Crew are still uncertain about the health of regular starters Chad Marshall, Shaun Francis, Danny O’Rourke and keeper Wiliam Hesmer, expect head coach Robert Warzycha to assemble a side with several veterans, such as Eddie Gaven, Andy Iro, Robbie Rogers and Jeff Cunningham.

The final, and in this writer’s opinion, pivotal match of the trip will kickoff next Sunday, with the Revs taking on Houston in the final match of the Atlanta tournament. Previous history and rivalries aside, this match is hugely important as it will serve as both team’s final live competition before they each open their respective MLS slates.

Houston have already had a taste of MLS competition in their preseason endeavors, taking part in Disney’s Pro Soccer Classic (the Dynamo lost in the final to FC Dallas on penalty kicks) which may lead to the Orange-clad outfit to being slightly further along in developing their own chemistry and squad.The club has performed quite well, amassing a 5-0-3 record in their preseason, and may have found a star in young Houston native Francisco Navas Cobo, who scored the game-tying goal in the Disney final, and has turned heads throughout the early stages of this season. Midfielder Geoff Cameron has enjoyed a resurgence thus far, and has reinvigorated a Dynamo side looking to retain past glory, while newcomers Kofi Sarkodie and Will Bruin have acclimated themselves well to MLS, and have shown at times they are more than capable of contributing.

Look for this final dress rehearsal to be spirited, yet cautious as both sides will want to remain healthy with the curtains opening on MLS 2011 less than a week later.

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Revolution 1 – 0 FC Dallas

Posted on 03 March 2011 by Hank Alexandre

New England Revolution vs. FC Dallas
February 23, 2011 – ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex (Orlando, Fla.)

Scoring Summary:
NE – Sainey Nyassi (Zack Schilawski) 10

New England Revolution: Matt Reis, Didier Domi, Ryan Cochrane, A.J. Soares, Zak Boggs, Chris Tierney (Seth Sinovic 89), Stephen McCarthy, Pat Phelan, Sainey Nyassi (Ryan Kinne 70), Zack Schilawski (Kheli Dube 70), Ilija Stolica

Substitutes Not Used: Bobby Shuttleworth (GK), Clint Irwin (GK), Tim Murray (GK), Fernando Cabadas, Alan Koger, Steven Perry, Roberto Linck, Andrew Sousa, Darrius Barnes

STATS: Shots: 10; Shots on Goal: 3; Saves: 4; Corner Kicks: 7; Offside: 1; Fouls Committed: 6

FC Dallas: Chris Seitz (Josh Lambo 60), Moises Hernandez, Alexis Pradie, Scott Gordon (Roberto Lopes 65), Andrew Wiedeman, Bryan Leyva (Paul Bim Ogunyemi 46), Bobby Warshaw, Andrew Jacobson, Eric Avila (Peri Marosevic 58), Bruno Guarda (Victor Ulloa 56), Maykel Galindo

STATS: Shots: 5; Shots on Goal: 5; Saves: 2; Corner Kicks: 3; Offside: 3; Fouls Committed: 6

Misconduct Summary:
NE- Didier Comi (caution) 80

Referee: Chris Penso
Assistant Referee: Eric Proctor
Assistant Referee: Matthew Miscannon


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Revs round out their roster

Posted on 03 March 2011 by Hank Alexandre

The New England Revolution announced today that they have signed the remainder of their unsigned 2011 draft picks.

The team confirmed yesterday what Coach Steve Nicol told fans at a supporters group event in Cambridge on Tuesday night: that the team had extended contracts to forward/midfielder Ryan Kinne, forward Alan Koger and midfielder Andrew Sousa.  The team also confirmed yesterday they had re-signed 2nd year players goalkeeper Tim Murray and forward Zak Boggs.

This brings the total number of players under contract with the Revolution to 26.  The Revs have also reportedly signed another international player from Nigeria and are talking with a potential Designated Player.

Kinne, 21, was a NSCAA All-American, Hermann Trophy semifinalist and Northeast Conference player of the year in both his junior and senior seasons at Monmouth. In 77 career games, he scored 35 goals, including 12 as a senior in 2010. He also added 21 assists, including six as a senior. The Revolution selected Kinne in the third round (42nd overall) in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft.

Koger, 23, was an all-region selection following his senior season at William & Mary after scoring 10 goals in 22 matches. He scored a total of 29 goals in his four-year career for the Tribe after redshirting his freshman season. As a senior, he helped push William & Mary to a No. 9 ranking during the season and a berth in the NCAA Tournament third round. The Revs picked Koger in the third round (54th overall) in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft

Sousa, 21, scored seven goals and added six assists in three seasons at Providence after playing one season at Limestone College (S.C.). The Fall River, Mass., native posted career best totals of four goals and two assists in 2010 as senior, appearing in 18 games. He played his high school soccer at B.M.C. Durfee High School. New England selected Sousa in the third round (42nd overall) in the 2011 MLS Supplemental Draft.

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TMR Episode 28 – The Midnight Ride vs The Preseason

Posted on 02 March 2011 by Hank Alexandre

TMR Episode 28 – The Midnight Ride vs The Preseason

This week Hank is joined by three newbies to the podcast to discuss the New England Revolution and their preseason: Kevin Koczwara and Ryan Fleming from The Soccer Guys (http://thesoccerguysonline.com), and Bob Madaio from Soccer Soap Box (http://soccersoapbox.com/).

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Revolution fans anxiously await news

Posted on 31 January 2011 by Hank Alexandre

While the transfer season in Europe is coming to a close, New England Revolution fans are “patiently” awaiting news from the Revolution front office.

The Revolution are coming off of their worst season in recent memory letting in a league high 50 goals, while scoring an all time team low of 32.  Team ownership and management recognized the failed expectations of the club at the end of the season, and assured fans that they will be making the necessary moves to bring the team back into contender status.  And while the Revs have made significant improvements addressing the back line by adding Didier Domi and Ryan Cochrane, and signing 2nd year player to Seth Sinovic to a new contract, the team has yet to address the lack of scoring prowess so blatantly evident in the team for the last three seasons.

Fan expectations were raised last week when Brian Bilello, the Revolution’s Chief Operating Officer, stated via a post on Twitter that there should be some news on a pair of signings “in a week or so”.  Since then, the Revolution fans have been chomping at the bit in anticipation of whom the players might be, with speculation that one of the signings may be the teams first Designated Player coming over from Europe.

However, as the Revolution’s pre-season starts today in Foxboro, the team’s front office is remaining unsurprisingly tight-lipped about any possibility as to whom the signings may be, or if they are in fact coming.

Meanwhile, speculation on the part of the Revolution fans, once rampant, is growing faint as marquee players such as Robbie Keane, who had been linked with MLS newcomers Vancouver Whitecaps, are being snapped up by European teams also actively looking for scoring talent.  Keane, who was sent to West Ham United on loan for the rest of the season this past Sunday, had looked a likely target as he had fallen out of favor with his current club, and was looking for regular playing time.  Keane also had been urged by the Republic of Ireland’s national team manager, Giovanni Trapattoni, to look to MLS as an option if he could not find first team football in Europe.

But without Keane in the picture, Revolution fans are left to wonder who the signings will be, and if they will be the attacking players the team so desperately needs.  Names like Nuno Gomes and Alex (deSousa) will remain in the list of potential signings some fans would like to see, however the likelihood that the team will go after a big name at this stage looks unlikely.

Revolution fans can only wait and see what news, if any, will be forthcoming from Foxboro.

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Revs fall to FC Dallas in preseason opener

Posted on 23 February 2010 by Hank Alexandre

It was only a preseason exhibition game, but after the Tuesday morning match up against FC Dallas in Orlando, the New England Revolution appear to be pretty much at the same point where they were at the end of last season: struggling to find goals.

This was just the first preseason game for the Revs this season, and to Steve Nicol’s credit, he made the most of it by using 17 of his available players with six substitutions in the second half. Of the players who made the trip, only Cory Gibbs and Edgaras Jankauskas were not available due to injury. The only available players who did not see any action were back up keepers Bobby Shuttleworth and Rylan Hawkins. Khano Smith, currently training with the Revs as a guest player while he looks for a new team, also did not take the field.

Early reports via Twitter suggested the Revolution were in control for the early part of the match, but a defensive miscue resulted in a Dallas goal from Atiba Harris. Rookie signing Zack Schilawski won a free kick at the top of the box, but Revolution free kick specialist Chris Tierney failed to capitalize.

Nicol made two changes at the half: Mike Videira for Pat Phelan and rookie Seth Sinovic for Kevin Alston (Sinovic played left back- Tierney switched to the right side). Later Nicol brought on Mauricio Castro and young striker hopeful Zak Boggs in a move designed to shake up the ineffective play from Gambian wingers Kenny Mansally and Sainey Nyassi. Gabriel Badilla came in late in the match for Darrius Barnes and Nico Colaluca replaced Kheli Dube, but by then the Revolution already trailed 2-0.

Despite the changes in the line-up, the Revolution could not capitalize on their few chances. Late in the game, Joseph had a chance in the box deflected wide of the goal, and Boggs blasted a shot off the outside of the post.

Revolution faithful who made the trip to Orlando said the defense looked strong, but that the offense continues to struggle. Fans hoping to see more of Jankauskas after an off season of conditioning and training with the team will have to wait until the Lithuanian recovers from a quad injury. And with Taylor Twellman still recovering from his nightmare head and neck injury, the only true forwards currently signed and on the squad are the streaky and inconsistent Dube and the untested rookie Schilawski. This will leave Steve Nicol (and the rest of us) scratching his head as to where the goals will come from.

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