Bye week might not be a blessing for Revolution
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – It looks like a pretty good time for New England to take a weekend off, but the advantages of this particular break aren't quite as straightforward as some might suspect.
While the Revs will no doubt cherish the opportunity to rest their legs before playing three games in eight days – starting with next Saturday's trip to New York – they may also lose the opportunity to sustain the rhythm that comes with playing matches on a regular basis.
“I guess I have mixed feelings, too,” Revolution defender Stephen McCarthy told MLSsoccer.com. “I think we're really starting to put it together. In the past few games, we've been really unlucky. I actually thought we've been playing well and thought we could have gotten results. It's sort of a bad time because of that, but it's always good to give the legs a rest and refocus since we're coming off two losses.”
HIGHLIGHTS: NE 1, DC 2
Revolution coach Jay Heaps said the upcoming schedule – and the strain it will cause with trips to New York and Real Salt Lake looming – increases the importance of getting away from the game for a few days and resting up for the tribulations ahead.
“This week, we're going to give the guys the weekend off,” Heaps said. “You need mental rest as much as you need physical rest. We'll come back next week and prepare that week as if we have three games. We'll do a lot of game planning for the next three matches.”
Lechner's foot injury reduces right back cover
Those preparations won't include fullback Florian Lechner after the German defender sustained a fifth metatarsal fracture in his right foot during a training session last week. His absence leaves the Revs with just one natural right back for the foreseeable future.
“We are light with Flo going down there, that's for sure,” Heaps said.
In order to fill the void, Heaps said he will look to the likes of Darrius Barnes and Ryan Guy to plug any holes that may arise until Lechner returns to full fitness.
“We do have Ryan that can go there,” Heaps said. “He's just versatile. We have Kevin [Alston] and Darrius [too]. The way I look at it, Darrius is the other cover at right back. With so many games coming up, we wanted [Alec Purdie] to play there [this week in training] because – going into next week – we want to have a lot of different guys ready for a lot of different positions.”