Revs Steal a Point vs. DC United
The New England Revolution went into Saturday’s match against DC United hoping to come out atop the Eastern Conference. They left with a scrappy point in an intense card-filled match at Gillette.
New England showed a full-strength side against DC after their 4-2 drubbing at the hands of Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday when they had rested a few stars. The match began promising for the Revs, but it came with a price.
Neither team was able to maintain a stronghold on the match at first, but New England created numerous chances against DC’s narrow defense. Jermaine Jones almost found Charlie Davies on a through ball early on, and DC goalkeeper Bill Hamid denied a Teal Bunbury cross that was surely going to find Charlie Davies’ foot. United center back Kofi Opare was instrumental in clearing the line against New England’s onslaught.
The Revs struck gold in the 46th minute. Juan Agudelo met a corner kick with his head and Hamid made an excellent save, but Davies cleaned up and slotted the ball home to make it 1-0 going into halftime.
New England’s fortunes changed shortly thereafter. Chris Tierney was shown a red card after a studs-up tackle on Chris Pontius, and the Revs went down to 10 men. They responded with a change in tactics, swapping striker Agudelo for defender Kevin Alston in the 56th minute.
Lee Nguyen earned a second yellow card from his chippy play in the 58th minute, and New England was all of a sudden down by two men with a half hour left to play.
It was only a matter of time before DC would take their space and score a goal, and they did it in the 80th minute. Taylor Kemp found himself alone on the wing and delivered a perfect low cross to Jairo Arrieta who neatly turned the match 1-1.
The eight-card match was chippy, but it is worth noting that man of the match Andrew Farrell played exceptionally well as he led the team’s spirited short-handed effort. New England will not have Lee Nguyen or Chris Tierney (two key members) for their MLS Cup Final rematch at home next week against the LA Galaxy.