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New England Revolution vs Houston Dynamo 07-13-2013 - Preview

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New England Revolution
1 - 2
Final
Houston Dynamo
MLS Regular Season
July 13, 2013
7:30pm EDT
Gillette Stadium
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New England Revolution vs. Houston Dynamo | MLS Match Preview

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION vs HOUSTON DYNAMO
GILLETTE STADIUM, Foxborough, Mass.
July 13, 2013 (WEEK 20, MLS Game #179) 7:30 p.m. ET (CSN-NE; CSN-Hou/KTBU)

A pair of clubs currently sitting on either side of the Eastern Conference playoff qualification line meet when the New England Revolution take on the Houston Dynamo on Saturday evening at Gillette Stadium. The teams are separated by just two points, with the Dynamo in fifth place in the East. The Revolution started a homestand last weekend with a 2-0 home win against San Jose, while the Dynamo snapped a long winless and goalless drought with a 1-0 home victory against Philadelphia Union.

DOWNLOAD FULL GAME GUIDE (PDF)

REFEREE: Armando Villarreal. AR1 (bench): Scott Kachmarik; AR2 (opposite): Mark Cahen; 4th: Mathieu Bourdeau
MLS Career: 20 games; FC/gm: 23.3; Y/gm: 2.7; R: 8; pens: 6

DISABLED LIST: NE: Kevin Alston
SUSPENDED: none
WARNINGS:
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: NE: Juan Toja, Kelyn Rowe, Lee Nguyen … HOU: Andrew Driver, Corey Ashe
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: HOU: Will Bruin, Corey Ashe (USA)

HEAD-TO-HEAD
ALL-TIME (15 meetings): Revolution 7 wins, 20 goals … Dynamo 3 wins, 14 goals … Ties 5
AT NEW ENGLAND (7 meetings): Revolution 2 wins, 11 goals … Dynamo 1 win, 9 goals … Ties 4
FUTURE MATCH: 9/28: New England Revolution vs. Houston Dynamo, 7:30 p.m.

  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Diego Fagundez and Juan Agudelo scored goals to lead New England to a 2-0 victory on May 18 at BBVA Compass Stadium.
  • The Revolution have won on five of their last seven visits to Houston. The last two meetings at Gillette Stadium have ended in draws.
  • The teams have played for three cups. They met in back-to-back MLS Cup Finals in 2006 and 2007, the Dynamo winning on both occasions (on penalty kicks in MLS Cup 2006; 2-1 in MLS Cup 2007). They also met in the 2008 SuperLiga final (won by New England on penalties).
  • Coaches record: Dominic Kinnear vs. NE: P20 W6 L7 D7 … Jay Heaps vs. HOU: P3 W1 L1 D1

LAST MEETING (MLS)
5/18: HOU 0, NE 2 (Fagundez 51; Agudelo 84)

  • Both teams were a man down before the first half was over. On a Revolution free kick, Dynamo defender Bobby Boswell and Revolution forward Dimitry Imbongo tangled, and referee Edvin Jurisevic reached for the red card and sent off both players.
  • The Revs took the lead six minutes into the second half. Diego Fagundez played a nifty give-and-go with Clyde Simms before making a weaving run into the penalty area and tucking his ensuing shot inside the near post for the opener.
  • New England hit for a second six minutes from the end. With the Dynamo caught with numbers forward trying to find the equalizer, Chris Tierney found Juan Agudelo on the left side of the area. He tried to corral a deflected pass, deflecting it off the Dynamo's Ricardo Clark and over the goal line before it could be cleared.
  • HOUSTON DYNAMO (4-1-3-2): Tally Hall - Kofi Sarkodie, Jermaine Taylor (Eric Brunner 10), Bobby Boswell (sent off 40), Corey Ashe - Ricardo Clark, Boniek Garcia, Andrew Driver, Brad Davis (Brian Ching 75) - Giles Barnes (Adam Moffat 43), Will Bruin.
  • NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (4-1-3-2): Bobby Shuttleworth - Andrew Farrell, Jose Goncalves, Stephen McCarthy, Darrius Barnes - Clyde Simms - Juan Toja (Scott Caldwell 63), Lee Nguyen, Ryan Guy (Juan Agudelo 35) - Diego Fagundez (Chris Tierney 75), Dimitry Imbongo (sent off 40).

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION
The New England Revolution put an end to a three-game winless run, defeating the San Jose Earthquakes 2-0 on Saturday evening at Gillette Stadium. The Revolution are in sixth place in the Eastern Conference with 24 points from 17 matches.

LAST MATCH

  • The Revolution opened the scoring in the 13th minute. Saer Sene started the sequence with a shot that Quakes goalkeeper Jon Busch was able to punch away. But the ball found its way back to Sene, and from well out, wheeled and fired a rocket that found the top-right corner of the net.
  • New England put the game out of reach in the 78th minute. Lee Nguyen sent a low cross into the six-yard box that second-half substitute Dimitry Imbongo was able to slide in front of after beating the San Jose backline, turning the ball into the goal.
  • Revolution head coach Jay Heaps made three changes to the team that came back for a 1-1 draw with Chivas USA at StubHub Center. Andrew Farrell came into the back four for Ryan Guy, Scott Caldwell started in midfield for Clyde Simms, and Chad Barrett came in up top in place of Jerry Bengtson.
  • NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (4-1-4-1): Bobby Shuttleworth - Andrew Farrell, Stephen McCarthy, Jose Goncalves, Chris Tierney - Scott Caldwell - Diego Fagundez (Juan Toja 88), Lee Nguyen, Kelyn Rowe, Saer Sene - Chad Barrett (Dimitry Imbongo 68).

TEAM NEWS

  • The Revolution recorded a fourth consecutive shutout in league play at home, and have not allowed a goal at Gillette Stadium in the last 395 minutes.
  • “It’s not any different on the road or at home in terms of our preparation, but there’s a good feel. I think there’s a good chemistry going on right now with our back line when we get the four guys that have been playing a lot together with Jose (Goncalves) and Stephen (McCarthy) in the middle working together. And of course, I think Bobby (Shuttleworth) is positioning and communicating well,” said Revolution head coach Jay Heaps.
  • The win also extended the Revolution’s home undefeated streak to five games, and they have allowed just four goals all season in Foxborough, the best home defensive record in the league.
  • “It was a long road trip for us. Obviously, the result in Vancouver was tough, but I think we did well to stop the bleeding and at least get a point at Chivas,” said defender Chris Tierney. “We’re always most comfortable at home. I think a lot of teams around the league really don’t look forward to coming here, which is obviously to our advantage.”
  • Saer Sene scored his second goal of the season, a stunning long-range strike to put the Revs into the lead. Of the 13 goals Sene has scored in MLS since arriving in New England, three have come from outside the penalty area.
  • “I like to shoot from far away. I don’t like to think too much. When I am on the field, I am trying stuff and I’m happy that tonight was successful,” Sene said. “ … I work on it in practice, I don’t know how to explain. My shot is like a strange way, sometimes I shoot and it is strong. I just try to put in on the goal and I know the ball is going to do something well.”
  • Said Heaps: “I think Saer has that ability with that left foot to make a move. For me, Saer had a good game for us, not just in the finish, but more so with what he did work related. I think that he showed he works hard off the ball, he works hard to defend and he did a nice job creating as well.”
  • Lee Nguyen recorded two assists, setting up both Revolution goals, the first two-assist game of his MLS career.
  • With Juan Agudelo sidelined with a knee sprain for a second consecutive match, Chad Barrett made his second league start of the season – his first since March 23.
  • “It was great energy all week from Chad (Barrett). It started last week in Chivas, just the intensity, the experience of having the grinds of summer, of muscling in opportunities. It carried over in training,” said Heaps. “He showed really well in training and I think he earned the start and I thought he showed really well.”
  • Dimitry Imbongo came off the substitutes’ bench for his second appearance over the last six games and scored his second goal of the season, both coming in those two shifts.

READ: New England carve out new place for Saer Sene and his strange, vicious strikes

HOUSTON DYNAMO
The Houston Dynamo put an end to their winless streak after seven league games, defeating Philadelphia Union 1-0 on Saturday evening at BBVA Compass Stadium. The Dynamo are in fifth place in the Eastern Conference with 26 points from 17 matches.

LAST MATCH

  • The game's lone goal came in the 59th minute. Giles Barnes raced forward from midfield into the box, before sending the ball wide to Jermaine Taylor. He then sent a driven cross into the center of the box where Ricardo Clark elevated to head it inside the far post.
  • Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear made three changes to the team that dropped a 2-0 decision to the New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena. Eric Brunner, Boniek Garcia and Omar Cummings came into the team in place of the suspended Kofi Sarkodie and with Corey Ashe and Will Bruin on international duty.
  • HOUSTON DYNAMO (4-4-2): Tally Hall - Warren Creavalle, Eric Brunner, Bobby Boswell, Jermaine Taylor - Boniek Garcia, Adam Moffat, Ricardo Clark, Andrew Driver (Alex Dixon 83) - Giles Barnes (Jason Johnson 76), Omar Cummings (Cam Weaver 69).

READ: Dynamo's Taylor playing well at left back in Corey Ashe's absence

TEAM NEWS

  • The Dynamo won in league play for the first time since May 8, putting an end to their winless run after seven games, tied for the second-longest stretch without a victory in club history.
  • “It was a great three points,” Houston head coach Dominic Kinnear said. “We made it a little bit harder than we could have. We created a lot of chances. I thought we were good for a goal tonight. One was enough. First win for a while. The guys are happy and so am I.”
  • The Dynamo scored their first goal since June 1 in the victory against Philadelphia, snapping their goalless streak at 388 minutes. It was the second-longest stretch in MLS this season without a goal, behind New England’s stretch of 394 minutes from March 9-April 20.
  • It was also the longest streak without a goal in club history, besting the previous mark of 275 minutes.
  • “We know what's been going on,” Kinnear said. “We have been peppered with questions over the last couple weeks about not winning. This is a proud group, and we get a little annoyed by it ... Any time you win whether it is a great win or the team's played poorly and you get a little lucky, you walk off the field with a little enjoyment out of it.”
  • Ricardo Clark scored his second goal of the season, his first since the opening game of the season, when he became the first Dynamo player to score a goal in 2013 in a 2-0 win vs. D.C. United.
  • Following a four-match absence to international duty where he then suffered an injury, Boniek García returned to the Dynamo lineup and played the full 90 minutes.
  • “I felt it physically, but from a footballing standpoint I think I really brought something to the game. Without being able to be in the team it’s hard to grab a rhythm,” García said. “Other than three balls I lost I feel really good about my performance and am happy to get back to that level.”
  • There was a rebuilt backline for the Dynamo. Eric Brunner made his first appearance since June 1, when he left injured after just 20 minutes, coming into central defense. Jermaine Taylor moved to left back with Corey Ashe on international duty, while Warren Creavalle made his first start in the back four following four consecutive starts in the midfield, coming at right back for the suspended Kofi Sarkodie.
  • “I’ve seen a lot of players be successful with being able to play different positions,” Ricardo Clark said of Creavalle. “If you look at other young players that have come through, Geoff Cameron showed the same qualities. It’s not that he’s the next Geoff Cameron, but it’s always a plus when a player’s able to be versatile and bring the same quality at every position he’s in.”
  • Omar Cummings made his first start of the season following offseason knee surgery, playing 69 minutes following three consecutive appearances off the substitutes’ bench.
  • “You look at the history of the Houston Dynamo, and it's a consistent theme that when people get chances, they step up and man up and put on a good performance,” goalkeeper Tally Hall said. “Tonight was no different. The guys that aren't typically starters showed they are fighting for position and making an argument for themselves.”