The Revs get back to work Sunday

The Revs get back to work Sunday

By Danny Picard

FOXBORO The New England Revolution get back to work on Sunday night, hosting the Chicago Fire in their first MLS match since June 5 in Seattle. The Revs last played a friendly against Cruzeiro at Gillette Stadium on June 13, and since, have used their two-week World Cup break wisely.

It gave us a chance to kind of look at some things that we havent done so well, and obviously some of the things we have done well, and try and add to that, said Revolution coach Steve Nicol after Fridays training session.

The Revs (3-7-2) enter Sundays league match with only one win in their last nine league matches. That win came on May 29 against the New York Red Bulls. Prior to that win, New England hadnt won a game since April 10.

Everyones hoping to carry more of the good into the second half of the season.

Looking back at the first part of the season, we just have to see what we need to correct on, said defender Cory Gibbs on Friday. Weve been training well, so Chicagos our first test.

Playing our game, is most important. Understanding what Steve Nicol wants from us, and playing up to the best of our abilities.

Gibbs added that the three most important things that the Revs must take into the second half of the season are focus, concentration, and belief.

Once those things come into play, our teams good enough to play football and score goals, and be a good team, he said.

Sundays an important game for us, said Nicol. We need to start picking points up. Theres no denying that. To do that, we have to be positive, and go after it. Sunday, we need to show everybody thats what we intend to do.

Theyll do it with an extra midfielder, and the official word on one less forward.

Taylor Twellman, one of New Englands star players, has been out all season with a concussion, but the team announced earlier in the week that hed be put on the season-ending injury list with continued health issues stemming from the concussion he suffered in August of 2008.

Were all worried about his main being, his health, said Gibbs. We do miss him, but we have to understand where hes coming from right now, and he has to get better, first and foremost.

I cant imagine whats going through his mind, said Nicol. And obviously for us, were losing a guy who you know is scoring anywhere from 15-20 goals a season. So nobody wins.

The Revs signed rookie midfielder Jason Griffiths the day after announcing Twellman would be put on the season-ending injury list. Griffiths was drafted by the Revs out of Kentucky in the third round of the 2010 MLS SuperDraft. Hes been with the team this season as a trialist.

We drafted him, because he has a nice touch, and he passes good, his touch is good, said Nicol. We think he can progress.

The Revolution, as a whole would like to progress from a brutal first half stretch, which saw many injuries and unfortunate circumstances. Their final run begins on Sunday night against Chicago.

Danny Picard is on Twitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard

Sounders rally to 3-3 draw with Revolution


Sounders rally to 3-3 draw with Revolution

SEATTLE - Osvaldo Alonso scored Seattle's third goal in a 13-minute stretch late in the second half to help the Sounders rally for a 3-3 draw with the New England Revolution on Saturday night.

Trailing 3-0 with 15 minutes of regulation time remaining, Sounders midfielder Nicolas Lodeiro scored to spark the comeback. Will Bruin cut the deficit to 3-2 in the 85th minute, and Alonso tied it in the 88th. Joevin Jones was credited with assists on two of the three goals, while Lodeiro and Gustav Svensson both helped on the final tally.

Rare is a result so dissatisfactory for both sides.

New England (2-3-4) let what once looked like a sure win get away. Seattle (2-2-4) dropped two points most would have heavily favored to get at kickoff.

"What I'm most frustrated about is that those guys put so much effort and so much of themselves into the team and into the game," Seattle coach Brian Schmetzer said, "and they cannot reward themselves with a performance that gets us all three points. I'm disappointed that we (didn't) take three at home."

Revolution forward Juan Agudelo scored twice. The Revolution took the lead in the 15th minute courtesy of a gaffe by Seattle goalkeeper Stefan Frei. Daigo Kobayashi's shot from well outside the penalty box was tame, but the ball was still able to sneak through Frei's body before rolling into the back of the net.

"I didn't take my eye off the ball," Frei said. "It moved. I made a blunder. I gifted them a goal. . An error on my part. It's as simple as that."

Agudelo scored on a header 11 minutes later, then made it 3-0 early in the second half when he finished off a New England counterattack.

Seattle finished with 74 percent of the possession and a 26-8 edge in shots. The Sounders scored three times, taking their league-leading total in that category to 10 in eight matches.

"It's definitely a good feeling coming back and getting a point, but at the end of the day, we're at home. We can't be giving away three goals and be down 3-0 at home," Bruin said. "That's as a collective, as a unit, being tough to play against."

The result extends Seattle's home unbeaten streak to 14 in regular season and playoff action dating to last year, which ties the longest such mark in club history. New England is winless in five matches away from home.

"We're gutted in there," Revs coach Jay Heaps said. "We had it in our hands. We let two points slip away. That said, it's good for rallying. It's tough to come here. We focus on the positive, but we have to correct the negative. This is one of those where I think we'll spend a lot of time reviewing it."

The Revolution return to action next Saturday at Columbus, while Seattle hosts Toronto FC in a rematch of last season's MLS Cup final.

Kraft-backed Boston soccer stadium plan is dead

Kraft-backed Boston soccer stadium plan is dead

A Robert Kraft-backed proposal for a $250 million soccer stadium at the site of the former Bayside Expo Center in Dorchester, Mass., appears to be dead.

Robert and Jonathan Kraft, owners of the NFL’s Patriots and New England Revolution of MLS, released a statement Friday that said, in part, “the project is not feasible to pursue on this site at this time.”

Talks between the Kraft Group and UMass Boston, which bought the land for $18.7 million in 2010, have apparently ended.

Here’s the full statement from the Krafts: 

“In 2015, we were invited to put together a stadium proposal for the former Bayside Exhibition Center site. Since then, we have invested millions of dollars and thousands of staff hours to design and structure a venue that would benefit UMass Boston, the City of Boston and serve as an asset to the surrounding communities, with an operating plan that would benefit all local constituencies. We were committed to a fully-funded, privately-financed stadium that would have totaled an investment in excess of $250 million. There was also a full-value land lease to UMass that would have provided annual payments to the university. As is the case with any development opportunity, there were numerous hurdles to overcome and we regularly adjusted our plans to cater to the needs of the project. Unfortunately, and for reasons beyond our control, it has been determined that this project is not feasible to pursue on this site at this time. It is our goal to continue to seek development opportunities where we can invest in a soccer specific stadium that will benefit its surrounding communities while giving our fans and our players a venue they will be proud to call home for generations to come.”