Revs washed away by Rapids, 3-0

Revs washed away by Rapids, 3-0

Special to CSNNE.com

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. Omar Cummings and Conor Casey scored first-half goals and former New England Revolution midfielder Wells Thompson added a late insurance tally as the Colorado Rapids rolled to a 3-0 win over the Revs on Saturday night at Dicks Sporting Goods Park.

Jamie Smith had a pair of assists for the Rapids (10-7-7, 37 pts.), who have now won three consecutive home games by a score of 3-0. Meanwhile, the shutout loss was the second straight for the Revolution (7-14-3, 24 pts.), which now travels directly to Texas for a midweek meeting with FC Dallas.

Cummings opened the scoring in the fifth minute with his team-leading 10th goal of the season, but Casey matched him 30 minutes later as he joined his teammate by reaching double digits in goals scored. Thompson who spent three years with the Revs from 2007-09 rounded out the scoring in the 83rd minute with an assist from recently-acquired forward Macoumba Kandji.

The loss extended the Revolutions winless streak in Colorado to nine games (0-6-3) dating back to 2002.

There were three changes to the Revolution side which suffered a 2-0 loss to Chivas USA last weekend at The Home Depot Center. Marko Perovic, Sainey Nyassi and Seth Sinovic all returned to the starting lineup in place of Zack Schilawski, Kheli Dube and Darrius Barnes, respectively.

Colorado began the game entirely on the front foot and it took just five minutes for the hosts to take a deserved 1-0 lead, putting the Revolution a goal behind inside 10 minutes for the second straight week.

Smith, Casey and Brian Mullan all had early chances for the Rapids, but predictably it was the red-hot Cummings who scored his fifth goal in the last four games from an acute angle. Smith was the provider, intercepting a pass from Emmanuel Osei before slipping a clever pass to Cummings in the box. The Jamaican forward made no mistake, calmly slotting a low shot inside the far post.

The Rapids so nearly doubled their lead in the 23rd minute when the dynamic tandem of Casey and Cummings linked up for a one-two outside the box, but Caseys resulting 20-yard blast kicked off the left post and bounced clear.

Casey and Cummings combined again 12 minutes later, however, and this time to deadly effect as the Rapids did claim a 2-0 lead before the halftime break. Smith was again the orchestrator from the left wing, slotting a low pass inside to Cummings, who used his first touch to play Casey into the left side of the box. The hulking forward made no mistake with his effort, blasting a low shot inside the near post.

The Revs began the second half unchanged but immediately improved in possession following the halftime break, and Perovic registered New Englands first shot on goal in the 56th minute with a long-range drive which forced a diving save out of Colorado goalkeeper Matt Pickens. Nyassi then threatened in the 64th minute, blasting a tight-angle drive which Pickens could only punch away.

Just one minute later Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis made a miraculous save to deny Casey, whose redirection from Cummings low driven cross appeared goal-bound. However, Reis reacted quickly and dove full-stretch to his right to push the effort away.

Reis was called into action once again in the 73rd minute as he denied Kandji, who was aiming for a debut goal after entering as a second-half substitute.

Wide open play continued and five minutes later it was the Revs who went close again, this time second-half substitute Kenny Mansally flashing a left-wing shot across the face of goal. In the 79th minute it was Colorados turn, as Quincy Amarikwa headed wide from six yards out.

The Rapids finally found the dagger in the 83rd minute when Thompson scored his first league goal for his new club against his former team. Thompson dribbled into the left side of the box and cut inside before guiding a low, right-footed shot inside the near post to provide the final score line of 3-0.

The Revs will conclude their two-game road trip on Wednesday, Sept. 22, when they visit FC Dallas at Pizza Hut Park. Kickoff is set for 8:30 p.m. ET.

Jurgen Klinsmann fired as coach of United States soccer team

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Jurgen Klinsmann fired as coach of United States soccer team

NEW YORK - Jurgen Klinsmann was fired as coach of the U.S. soccer team Monday, six days after a 4-0 loss at Costa Rica dropped the Americans to 0-2 in the final round of World Cup qualifying.

Los Angeles Galaxy coach Bruce Arena is the favorite to succeed Klinsmann, and his hiring could be announced as early as Tuesday. Arena coached the national team from 1998 to 2006.

Qualifying resumes when the U.S. hosts Honduras on March 24 and plays four days later at Panama.

"While we remain confident that we have quality players to help us advance to Russia 2018, the form and growth of the team up to this point left us convinced that we need to go in a different direction," U.S. Soccer Federation President Sunil Gulati said in a statement. "With the next qualifying match in late March, we have several months to refocus the group and determine the best way forward to ensure a successful journey to qualify for our eighth consecutive World Cup."

A former German star forward who has lived mostly in Southern California since retiring as a player in 1998, Klinsmann replaced Bob Bradley in July 2011 and led the team to the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup title and the second round of the 2014 World Cup, where the Americans lost to Belgium in extra time.

The USSF announced in December 2013 a four-year contract extension through 2018, but the successful World Cup was followed by poor performances. The U.S. was knocked out by Jamaica in last year's Gold Cup semifinals and lost to Mexico in a playoff for a Confederations Cup berth. The team rebounded to reach this year's Copa America semifinals before losing to Argentina 4-0. But this month Mexico beat the Americans 2-1 at Columbus, Ohio, in the first home qualifying loss for the U.S. since 2001.

And last week, the Americans were routed in Costa Rica, their largest margin of defeat in qualifying since 1980. They dropped to 0-2 for the first time in the hexagonal, as the final round of World Cup qualifying in North and Central America and the Caribbean is known.

While there is time to recover, given the top three teams qualify for the 2018 tournament in Russia and the fourth-place finisher advances to a playoff against Asia's No. 5 team, players seemed confused by Klinsmann's tactics, such as a 3-4-1-2 formation used at the start against the Mexicans.

"Today we made the difficult decision of parting ways with Jurgen Klinsmann," Gulati said. "There were considerable achievements along the way ... but there were also lesser publicized efforts behind the scenes. He challenged everyone in the U.S. Soccer community to think about things in new ways, and thanks to his efforts we have grown as an organization and expect there will be benefits from his work for years to come."

The U.S. had not changed coaches in the middle of qualifying since the USSF made the position a full-time job and hired Bob Gansler in 1989 to replace Lothar Osiander, who also at the time was a waiter at a San Francisco restaurant.

Klinsmann made controversial decisions, such as dropping Landon Donovan from the 2014 World Cup roster while taking along relatively inexperienced players such as John Brooks, Julian Green and DeAndre Yedlin. Brooks and Green were among five German-Americans on the 23-man U.S. World Cup roster, which drew criticism from some in the American soccer community.

He coached the team to a 55-27-16 record, including a U.S.-record 12-game winning streak and victories in exhibitions at Italy, Germany and the Netherlands. He has worked in the past year to integrate more young players into the lineup, such as teen midfield sensation Christian Pulisic, Bobby Wood and Jordan Morris.

Arena, a 65-year-old wisecracking Brooklynite known for blunt talk, was inducted into the U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2010. He coached the University of Virginia from 1978-95, then coached D.C. United to titles in Major League Soccer's first two seasons before losing in the 1998 final. As U.S. coach, he led the Americans to the 2002 World Cup quarterfinals in the team's best finish since 1930.

He was let go after the team's first-round elimination in 2006. Gulati unsuccessfully courted Klinsmann, who won the 1990 World Cup with West Germany and the 1996 European Championship with Germany, then coached his nation to the 2006 World Cup semifinals.

When Gulati and Klinsmann couldn't reach an agreement, the USSF hired Bradley, who coached the team to the second round of the 2010 World Cup. A year later, the Americans stumbled in the Gold Cup, and Klinsmann replaced Bradley.

Arena coached the New York Red Bulls of MLS from July 2006 to November 2007, then was hired the following August by the Galaxy. He led the team to MLS titles in 2011, '12 and '14.