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