New England Revolution vs Seattle Sounders FC 06-30-2012 - Recap

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New England Revolution
2 - 2
Final
Seattle Sounders FC
MLS Regular Season
June 30, 2012
7:30pm EDT
Gillette Stadium

Recap: Last-gasp Fagundez goal extends Sounders slump

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – With a header in the 94th minute at Gillette Stadium on Saturday night, New England Revolution second-half substitute Diego Fagundez earned a point for the home side and drove a stake through the visiting Seattle Sounders’ attempt to snap an MLS winless streak that now stands at eight games.

New England forward Saer Sene staked the Revs to a 1-0 lead inside the opening quarter of an hour, but Sounders FC navigated through the early surge and responded with an Eddie Johnson brace before halftime to take control of the game.

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It looked like Seattle would secure their first win in league play since a 2-0 victory at FC Dallas on May 9 and snap a club-record, seven-match winless streak in the process, but Fagundez nodded home Fernando Cárdenas' cross in stoppage time – one week after Chris Tierney accomplished a similar feat in the 2-2 draw at Toronto FC – to extend Seattle's drought.

Sene consolidated the Revolution's aggressive and bright start to the match by notching his team-leading eighth goal of the season after 12 minutes. The previous pair of chances by Sene and Clyde Simms started from crosses on the left side, but the French forward found this opportunity presented to him inside the goal area off a square ball from Blake Brettschneider. Seattle's claims for offside went unheeded as Sene comfortably slotted home and the visitors conceded the first goal of the match for their eighth consecutive outing.

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Seattle improved after conceding and pulled level 11 minutes later through a tidy piece of buildup play on the edge of the penalty area. Rosales won possession on the right side and immediately looked to play directly toward goal. He subsequently clipped a diagonal ball for Johnson to nod home, earning the striker his third goal in four games.

The former US international made it four goals in four outings after 36 minutes with another header. Marc Burch retrieved an overhit service deep in the left corner, then curled a cross toward the back post. Johnson rose highest over a pair of challenges to polish off the chance and stake Sounders FC to a halftime lead.

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Seattle replaced injured goalkeeper Andrew Weber (groin) with backup Bryan Meredith at the interval. Meredith found himself called into action two minutes after play resumed as he dove to cover up Lee Nguyen's shot.

The second half lacked some of the incisiveness and some of the tempo of the opening stanza, but Alonso – now suspended for Wednesday's visit to Real Salt Lake after picking up his fifth booking in the first half – squandered a good chance after 69 minutes. Johnson navigated his way to the byline and crossed to the back post, but Alonso couldn't direct his header on goal.

New England coach Jay Heaps inserted Cárdenas, Fagundez and Kelyn Rowe and switched to a three-man back line in the final ten minutes in an attempt to change the calculus of the game.

The pressure finally told in the fourth minute of stoppage time as Fagundez headed home his first goal of the season to extend the Revs' unbeaten run to four (1-0-3) and send Seattle home with just a point.

MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match

Rank Player What We Saw
1 Eddie Johnson Nice run for the first. Nice strength for the second. On another night, his brace would have been enough for the win.
2 Shalrie Joseph It's hardly a surprise at this point when the Grenadan plays well. The Revs offense ran through their general all night as Joseph time and again picked out incisive passes.
3 Diego Fagundez How 'bout the kid? The 17-year-old picked a great time to get his first goal of the season.