By Danny Picard
FOXBORO -- @font-face font-family: "Times New Roman";p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; table.MsoNormalTable font-size: 10pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; div.Section1 page: Section1; Saturday night pretty much summed it up.
The way the New England Revolution lost to Real Salt Lake,2-1, at Gillette Stadium, typifies the season, according to Revs coach SteveNicol.
Not just with the way Real Salt Lake scored both of theirgoals, but also, with the timing of them, and more specifically, the timing of thegame-winner, which was scored by Alvaro Saborio in the 84th minute, not eventwo full minutes after Revolution midfielder Sainey Nyassi (originally creditedto Kenny Mansally) tied the game at 1-1 in the 82nd minute.
As far as the goals we allowed, theyre terrible goals,said Nicol after the loss. I mean, Salt Lakes a good team, but I thought wewere better than them tonight.
The Revs outshot Real Salt Lake 20-6, and held an 8-3shots-on-goal advantage in the game. They allowed two goals that could have,and probably should have been prevented. But somewhere within Saturday nightsloss that symbolized the entire 2010 season for New England, there was anotherissue that once again reared its ugly head.
And Shalrie Joseph went out of his way to point out, afterthe loss, that this Revs team has a whole lot of growing up to do.
You can take some positives out of it, but at the end ofthe day, we lost 2-1, and it shows in our maturity on the field, that we cantconcentrate for 90 minutes, and we start doing stuff when were not supposedto, said New Englands captain. Once we do that, we lose focus, we lose ourconcentration, and we start losing the game.
Joseph went on to say that maturity has been the teamsbiggest issue all season.
We have 23-, 24-year-olds, not to put their age on display,but at the end of the day, weve got to be able to stay concentrated for 90minutes, said Joseph. You dont give up goals like that. They basically hadnothing the whole game. We kept pushing the tempo, we kept attacking, we keptpossession well, we moved, created chances, and at the end of the night, werestill 2-1 down. You look, everybodys sour now. The mood in this locker room isjust down because you come out and dont win at all.
As veterans on the team, Joseph and Matt Reis both took someof the responsibility, when addressing those maturity issues after Saturday night's loss. But as vocalleaders, neither declined the opportunity to call out the rest of theRevolution squad.
Weve got to put that on me and Matt, said Joseph. Wevegot to get them going again. Weve got to be set and concentrate for 90minutes. But at the end of the day, it comes down to the individual on thefield. Theres 11 of us. Even though we play as a team, everybody knows theirwork, everybody knows their task out there, and they've just got to do it."
Weve lost a few leaders in this locker room, said Reis.And its time for the young guys to step up and realize theyre a key part ofthis team. Shalrie said its he and I, the two elder statesmen of the team, butin the end, whoevers out there has got to take control of their job and dotheir job.
Both of Real Salt Lakes goals came off set pieces a NatBorchers header off a free kick from 30-yards out in the 68th minute, andSaborios header off Javier Morales corner kick. Joseph said after the gamethat those types of goals are inexcusable. And everyone else agreed.
Theyre both basic-error goals, said Nicol. You go downthe park on Sunday morning, and you dont see two goals like that. Youshouldnt see two goals like that on a professional football field. And thatswhere we let ourselves down.
I mean, they were just basic errors that kind of stung usmost of the season.
Danny Picard is on Twitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard