Preview: Rapids travel to NE looking for second straight win

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION vs COLORADO RAPIDS
GILLETTE STADIUM, Foxborough, Mass.

May 2, 2012 (WEEK 9, MLS Game #74)
8 p.m. ET (CSN-NE; Altitude)

The New England Revolution and Colorado Rapids will renew acquaintances once again when the clubs meet in a midweek contest at Gillette Stadium. The Revolution are looking to put a halt to a three-game losing slide, their last result a 1-0 loss to the New York Red Bulls on the road. The Rapids snapped a three-game losing skid of their own last weekend, with an impressive 4-0 home win against Chivas USA.

REFEREE: Terry Vaughn. SAR (bench): Greg Barkey; JAR (opposite): Chris Strickland; 4th: Jose Carlos Rivero MLS Career: 152 games; FC/gm: 28.3; Y/gm: 3.7; R: 49; pens: 49

COMPLETE GAME GUIDE (PDF)

INJURY REPORT: NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION — OUT: FW Zak Boggs (R ankle sprain); MF Ryan Guy (R calf tightness); DF Flo Lechner (R foot fifth metatarsal fracture); MF Sainey Nyassi (R hamstring strain); FW Jeremiah White (concussion) … COLORADO RAPIDS — OUT: DF Anthony Wallace (L Achilles tear); MF Pablo Mastroeni (headaches); MF Ross LaBauex (sports hernia); QUESTIONABLE: MF Jamie Smith (R knee ACL tear); DF Marvell Wynne (R hamstring strain); PROBABLE: MF MartÌn Rivero (R quadriceps soreness); FW Conor Casey (L Achilles tear)

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none

SUSPENDED: none

WARNINGS:

SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none

SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: COL: Jeff Larentowicz

HEAD-TO-HEAD

ALL-TIME (38 meetings): Revolution 11 wins (2 shootout), 49 goals … Rapids 18 wins (1 shootout), 63 goals … Ties 9

AT NEW ENGLAND (19 meetings): Revolution 8 wins (2 shootout), 33 goals … Rapids 6 wins (0 shootout), 27 goals … Ties 5

LAST YEAR (MLS):

5/7: NE 0, COL 0

7/23: COL 2, NE 2 (Folan 65; Kimura 81 — Feilhaber 25; Joseph 90)

  • This is the only league meeting between the clubs this season.
     
  • The Revolution haven’t defeated Colorado since a 1-0 win Sept. 29, 2007. The Rapids have won three of the eight games since, with one draw.
     
  • The Revs haven’t won in Denver since June 15, 2002, a 2-1 win. Since, the Rapids are 6-0-4 at home vs. New England, including two wins and three draws in five meetings all-time at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
     
  • Coaches record: Oscar Pareja vs. NE: first game … Jay Heaps vs. COL: first game

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION

The New England Revolution went down to a third successive defeat, this time a 1-0 loss to the New York Red Bulls on Saturday afternoon at Red Bull Arena. The Revolution are in ninth place in the Eastern Conference with 6 points from 7games.

LAST MATCH

  • HIGHLIGHTS: NY 1, NE 0

    The game's lone goal came in the seventh minute. Connor Lade played a ball over the top down the left side, and Thierry Henry beat New England goalkeeper Matt Reis to the ball and sent a delicate lob over the 'keeper into the net.
     

  • Henry was forced out of the game in the 23rd minute after slipping while trying to make a run on goal. The French star immediately clutched the back of his right leg and had to be helped off the field. The Red Bulls later said he suffered a hamstring strain.
     
  • Red Bulls goalkeeper Ryan Meara was called upon to make five saves to record his first professional shutout.
     
  • Revolution head coach Jay Heaps made one change to the team that suffered a 2-1 loss to D.C. United at Gillette Stadium. Shalrie Joseph returned from suspension, coming into the side in place of Ryan Guy.

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (4-4-2): Matt Reis - Kevin Alston, A.J. Soares, Stephen McCarthy, Chris Tierney (Alec Purdie 87) - Kelyn Rowe (Benny Feilhaber 46), Clyde Simms, Shalrie Joseph, Lee Nguyen - Saer Sene, Jose Moreno (Bjorn Runstrom 75)

TEAM NEWS

  • The Revolution have lost three games in a row, and have lost 10 of their last 12 dating back to the end of last season, when they had a five-game losing streak from Sept. 16-Oct. 15.
     
  • “We started poorly; weren’t good enough on certain situations. We attacked but we didn’t put a final ball in. We had a lot of chances but I felt we had a little flat start which was disappointing,” said Revolution head coach Jay Heaps.
     
  • Five of the Revolution’s seven games this season have featured goals scored in the opening 15 minutes. Henry’s goal was the second scored against New England ñ and led to a second 1-0 defeat (Chris Wondolowski scored after 15 minutes in San Jose’s season-opening win.
     
  • “I think maybe the goal might have been what determined how much we were keeping the ball because I think it woke everyone up,” Stephen McCarthy said. “It was early and we said, ‘We can’t keep giving the ball away.’ I don’t know if it was the goal or Henry leaving or what, but we can’t start like that and we need to wake up earlier.”
     
  • The Revs have been shutout four times in seven games this season. They’ve scored five goals in seven games, the same as Philadelphia Union and ahead of only Chivas USA (4) in the league goalscoring table.
  • “I feel like we’ve been a little bit unlucky; I think unlucky is the word,” said Heaps. “Defensively we’ve held strong. We’ve done some things that I’d like to get back, but we can’t, so we have to improve upon (the mistakes). But offensively, I think if we can just be a little bit more active, (have) a little bit more movement inside the 18. We can break teams down; we can. But I’d like to see us maybe take advantage of some crosses and try to use some of the size we have.”
     
  • Benny Feilhaber came on at halftime, a second consecutive appearance as a substitute after missing three games. Feilhaber had started the opening two games of the season.
     
  • “I think I have enough minutes to give. I don’t think I’m 90 minutes fit yet, but I can definitely give a good portion of the game and hopefully I’m there from the start,” said Feilhaber. “But we’ll see what Jay (Heaps) wants to do, I know he’s probably going to change things around since we have three games this week, but we’ll see what happens.”
     
  • Said Heaps: “In the second half, when we made a couple of tactical changes it certainly went our way in terms of possession, in terms of the game.”
     
  • The Colorado match starts a stretch of eight home games out of the next 11 for the Revolution, through mid-July.

COLORADO RAPIDS

The Colorado Rapids put an emphatic end to their three-game losing slide, rolling to a 4-0 win against Chivas USA on Saturday evening at Dickís Sporting Goods Park. The Rapids are in a tie for fifth place in the Western Conference with 12 points from 8 games.

LAST MATCH

  • HIGHLIGHTS: COL 4, CHV 0

    The Rapids took the lead in the 50th minute, on their first corner of the match. Martin Rivero served the ball from the left side and Tony Cascio calmly chested the ball away from his defender and fired an unstoppable shot inside the far corner.
     

  • The Rapids then broke the game open with three late goals. Freed down the left by Cascio, Omar Cummings delivered a centering pass that skipped past two defenders to Kamani Hill, who slotted home from the heart of the area.
     
  • Two minutes later, Jeff Larentowicz broke through on the right side of the Chivas area, only to be brought down by Ante Jazic for a penalty kick, which he took himself and buried.
     
  • Hill added his second goal of the match two minutes into stoppage time following a late onslaught of shots on the Chivas goal, finally drilling the ball home after a Conor Casey effort was blocked in the goalmouth.
     
  • Rapids head coach Oscar Pareja made one change to the side that fell 2-1 to the LA Galaxy at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. Martin Rivero came into the side in place of Kamani Hill.

COLORADO RAPIDS (4-4-2): Matt Pickens - Kosuke Kimura (Hunter Freeman 46), Marvell Wynne, Drew Moor, Luis Zapata - Brian Mullan, Jeff Larentowicz, Jaime Castrillon, Martin Rivero (Kamani Hill 70) - Tony Cascio, Omar Cummings (Conor Casey 90).

TEAM NEWS

  • The Rapids put an end to their three-game losing skid and now hit the road for three consecutive games, at New England, Dallas and D.C. United.
     
  • “It is for sure a relief for everyone knowing that we didn’t win the last three games, and now have three games away - it was a must-win for us. And fortunately the guys got the performance that we wanted,” said Rapids head coach Oscar Pareja.
     
  • For a second consecutive game, Pareja lined up Cummings and Cascio as a strike pair in a 4-4-2 system. He had started the season with Cummings as the spearhead in a 4-3-3.
     
  • “Up front it’s easier because you’re making runs off someone,” Cummings said. “You try to combine whenever you can. It works. Each system has their benefits; I guess you just have to make the best of it.”
     
  • Cascio scored the second goal of his rookie campaign. He also added his first MLS assist, feeding Omar Cummings for what led to Kamani Hill’s first goal of the night.
     
  • “I think the 4-4-2 is more center-oriented and Omar and I are a little closer together,” Cascio said. “That way, we can work with each other. We’re two different players; he likes to make those runs in behind and I can check to and so vice-versa. It’s a tough transition but I just try and do my best out there. I’m not too much of a forward, but Oscar said I’m versatile, so I’ve been up there trying to create chances.”
     
  • Pareja has started the same back four for all eight matches this season, but at halftime against Chivas USA, he brought on Hunter Freeman for Kosuke Kimura at right back.
     
  • “We wanted to have a little bit more solidness in the back,” Pareja said. “Kosuke was bringing energy going forward, but I wanted to bring in Hunter to give it a little more stability in there.” Said Freeman: “Hopefully I’ve given [the coaching staff] something to think about. I felt good.”
     
  • Since being acquired by the Rapids five games ago through the lottery process, Kamani Hill has scored three goals, two coming in the win against Chivas.
     
  • “They started to push a lot guys forward because they were like, ‘OK, we’ve got nothing to lose, let’s attack’ and it gave us the opportunity to counter, and we scored goals off of it, which is good,” said Hill. “Sometimes you don’t and you’re just taking pressure, but we managed to capitalize and that’s real positive.”
     
  • With the shutout in the 4-0 win against Chivas, Rapids goalkeeper Matt Pickens equaled the club’s shutout mark (25), set by current Vancouver goalkeeper Joe Cannon from 2003-06.