NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION v D.C. UNITED
GILLETTE STADIUM, Foxborough, Mass.
6 p.m. ET (FSN-NE)
June 17, 2006 (WEEK 12) / MLS Game #68
The New England Revolution and D.C. United reprise what's become one of the more heated rivalries in Major League Soccer, facing each other for the second time in three weeks after United took a hard-fought 1-0 victory at RFK Stadium. The Revolution haven't won in four games, but scoring twice in stoppage time to gain a 3-3 draw with the Chicago Fire in the first match at Toyota Park last weekend might feel like a victory. United saw their three-game winning streak put to an end last weekend when a late equalizer gave the Los Angeles Galaxy a 1-1 draw, but they last lost on May 6.
REFEREE: Brian Hall. SAR (bench): Tom Supple; JAR (opposite): Rick Eddy; 4th: Erich Simmons
MLS Career: 108 games; FC/gm: 29.5; Y/gm: 3.2; R: 27; pens: 34
MLS 2006: 5 games; FC/gm: 32.0 (avg: 29.9); Y/gm: 2.6 (avg: 3.82); R: 0 (MLS: 9); pens: 1 (MLS: 15)
Games involving Revolution: P19 W10 L5 T4; FC/gm: 29.7; Y/gm: 3.1; R: 5; pens: 5
Games involving United: P25 W11 L10 T4; FC/gm: 31.7; Y/gm: 3.2; R: 6; pens: 7
INJURY REPORT: NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION - OUT: DF Marshall Leonard (L Achilles tendon repair); DF James Riley (R ankle peroneal strain); MF Leandro De Oliveira (R knee sprain); DOUBTFUL: MF Khano Smith (L knee surgery); DF Joe Franchino (R ankle sprain); QUESTIONABLE: MF Daniel Hernandez (L ankle sprain); FW Pat Noonan (lower back); PROBABLE: MF Ryan Latham (abdominal strain); FW Willie Sims (R gluteal strain); GK Doug Warren (R knee sprain) ... D.C. UNITED - OUT: DF David Stokes (quadriceps strain); DF Brandon Prideaux (MCL sprain); QUESTIONABLE: MF Santino Quaranta (hamstring strain); FW Jamil Walker (hamstring strain)
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: NE: Clint Dempsey (USA; 2006 World Cup); Avery John (Trinidad & Tobago; 2006 World Cup) ... DC: Ben Olsen (2006 World Cup; USA)
This is the second of four meetings this season between the Eastern Conference rivals, the first of two at Gillette Stadium, the first two weeks coming in a span of just three weeks. They also meet twice in three weeks at season's end to conclude the league season series: Sept. 13 in Foxborough and Oct. 7 in the nation's capital.
The Revolution won three of the four meetings last season after winning just once in eight tries over the previous two league campaigns. That doesn't include in the 2004 Eastern Conference Championship, also won by United in dramatic fashion, 4-3 on penalty kicks after the clubs battled to a 3-3 draw over 120 minutes.
Coaches record: Steve Nicol v DC: P18 W8 L7 D3 ... Peter Nowak vs. NE: P9 W4 L3 D2
ALL-TIME (41 meetings): Revolution 16 wins (3 shootout), 51 goals ... United 22 wins (4 shootout), 61 goals ... 3 draws
AT FOXBOROUGH: (20 meetings): Revolution 11 wins (2 shootout), 23 goals ... United 8 wins (2 shootout), 19 goals ... 1 draw
United extended their unbeaten streak to five games - winning their third game in a row - while also increasing their lead atop the Eastern Conference with a 1-0 victory against the Revolution at RFK Stadium on June 3.
Jaime Moreno hit for the game's only goal in the 14th minute, although it had a whisper of controversy. Christian Gomez looped a ball over the Revolution defense and while they held their line, the flag stayed down and Moreno raced in alone on New England 'keeper Matt Reis, rounding the netminder and rolling the ball into the open goal as center back Michael Parkhurst just failed to keep it from crossing the line.
An already injury-ravaged Revolution were struck a blow very early on, when Pat Noonan was forced off the field after again suffering a hamstring injury.
Here's Peter Nowak's team (3-4-1-2): Troy Perkins - Bryan Namoff, Bobby Boswell, Facundo Erpen - Joshua Gros, Brian Carroll, Clyde Simms, Freddy Adu - Christian Gomez (Domenic Mediate 66) - Alecko Eskandarian (Lucio Filomeno 75), Jaime Moreno. [Substitutes Not Used: Jeff Carroll, Devon McTavish, Matt Nickell, Nick Rimando, John Wilson]
Here's Steve Nicol's team (3-4-1-2): Matt Reis - Jay Heaps, Michael Parkhurst, Joe Franchino - Steve Ralston, Andy Dorman, Shalrie Joseph, Tony Lochhead - Jose Cancela - Pat Noonan (Jeff Larentowicz 13), Taylor Twellman. [Substitutes Not Used: Kyle Brown, Pat Haggerty, T.J. Tomasso, Doug Warren, Adam Williamson, Danny Wynn]
6/3: DC 1, NE 0 (Moreno 14)
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION
The New England Revolution saw their winless streak extended to four matches, but will likely look upon their last result as a victory, scoring two goals in stoppage time to come back for a 3-3 draw with the Chicago Fire last Sunday afternoon at Toyota Park. The Revolution are in fourth place in the Eastern Conference with 12 points from 10 matches, two behind the Columbus Crew and one ahead the Fire, now 13 points out of first place.
The Fire finally had a home game after nine matches on the road while their new Bridgeview home was being completed, having lost two in a row to end the away run while the Revolution were coming in with a three-game winless streak of their own.
Nate Jaqua went into the history books as the first player to score in the new Firehouse, knocking home a rebound in the 39th minute after Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis failed to hold a Andy Herron blast. Then in the 79th minute, Jaqua doubled his and the Fire's haul in nearly similar circumstances, knocking home a bouncing ball in the box after a Gonzalo Segares cross from the left wasn't cleared.
But three minutes from the end, Taylor Twellman started the fireworks show - perhaps a little prematurely. Tony Lochhead whipped in a cross from the left, and Twellman flicked home a header to pull a goal back for New England.
A minute into four announced minutes of added time, Calen Carr scored his first professional goal, easily converting while all alone in the area to finish off a neat passing movement on the counter.
But three minutes into stoppage time, the Revolution once again cut the lead to one. Andy Dorman got to the byeline and pulled a rolling ball back for Steve Ralston, who knocked it home from the penalty spot. Then not even a minute later the Revs hit for the equalizer, a long ball corralled by Kyle Brown deep in the Fire penalty area, and he pulled it back for Dorman to drive home for the leveller.
Revolution head coach Steve Nicol made one change to the team that lost 1-0 to D.C. United the weekend before in Washington. With Pat Noonan once again out to injury, Jeff Larentowicz took his place in the first XI in a midfield role.
Here's Nicol's team (3-4-1-2): Matt Reis - Jay Heaps, Michael Parkhurst, Joe Franchino (Kyle Brown 82) -Steve Ralston, Shalrie Joseph, Jeff Larentowicz, Tony Lochhead - Andy Dorman - Taylor Twellman, Jose Cancela. [Substitutes Not Used: Jani Galik, Pat Haggerty, T.J. Tomasso, Adam Williamson, Danny Wynn]
"It was like robbery. We should've got three points. Daylight robbery. I'm sitting thinking I've never been on such a one-sided game and lost two-nil," said Nicol.
When Twellman scored in the 87th minute, it was the Revolution's first goal on the road in 503 minutes - since Clint Dempsey's 33rd-minute goal that gave the Revolution a 1-0 victory against the Los Angeles Galaxy on April 1 in the season opener.
"That's the only thing that's been missing from our game," Nicol said of his team's road woes. "We played well last week at D.C., and tonight we felt like we were the home team. We just dominated the game, and it would have been a tragedy if we didn't take something away."
Earlier - just before the Fire hit for their second - the Revolution had a goal ruled out for offside. "Obviously the [goal] taken off is a ridiculous call which we get against us, again. This has happened week in and week out now ... we're getting decisions which are huge for us," Nicol said. "They're costing us points. That call cost us another two points tonight."
But Dorman - who saw that goal ruled out - came back to hit for the tying goal. "It's good to get one at the end. I thought I was a good few yards onside for the goals and they disallow it so I was obviously disappointed with that," he said. "I guess it's a good result in the end. I felt like we deserved something out of the game - three points would have been nice but we'll take the draw after going down two goals with, like, five minutes left."
D.C. United saw their three-game winning streak put to an end, but still extended their unbeaten run to six matches, allowing a late equalizer in a 1-1 draw with the Los Angeles Galaxy at The Home Depot Center on Sunday afternoon. United still lead the Eastern Conference and have the best record in MLS with 25 points from 12 matches, eight points ahead of the Kansas City Wizards in the division and one ahead of West leader FC Dallas in the overall table.
Frank Yallop was facing his second game in charge of the Galaxy in just a four-day span, his team still riding a seven-game losing streak, while United had won three games on the trot while racing to the best overall record in the league.
Christian Gomez put United into the lead in the 21st minute with a candidate for Goal of the Year honors. Receiving a rolling ball with his back to goal and Ugo Ihemelu right on his back, he flicked the ball over himself and the L.A. defender, raced around to get it on the other side and hitting a dipping left-footed full volley from all of 25 yards that sailed over Kevin Hartman and dove underneath the crossbar.
But second-half substitute Cobi Jones, who hadn't played in three games with an Achilles injury, proved the difference two minutes from time. A long ball from Paulo Nagamura from the center circle took a fortunate bounce off a United defender and fell to Jones, who quickly rounded D.C. 'keeper Troy Perkins as he came off his line and stroked the ball into the empty net for the tying goal.
United head coach Peter Nowak made no changes to his starting lineup for the fourth consecutive match. Here's Nowak's team (3-4-1-2): Troy Perkins - Facundo Erpen, Bobby Boswell, Bryan Namoff - Joshua Gros, Brian Carroll, Clyde Simms, Freddy Adu - Christian Gomez (Domenic Mediate 81) - Jaime Moreno, Alecko Eskandarian (Lucio Filomeno 46). [Substitutes Not Used: Jeff Carroll, Matt Nickell, Brandon Prideaux, Nick Rimando, John Wilson]
"I think despite the field conditions and the overall conditions here, we kept the ball pretty well. We had some chances and our goal was maybe the goal of the year. That was the highlight of this game," Nowak said. "Jaime (Moreno) and Christian (Gomez) were working hard in the middle of the park and kept the ball well for us. The lead gave us the confidence, and I think we played pretty well throughout the end of the game."
United knew the Galaxy were grow increasingly anxious as the match continued, and weren't looking to bunker in and protect the one-goal lead. "The Galaxy team is very desperate and it's always tough to play teams like that," Nowak said. "They have basically nothing to lose. They played at home so they're going to fight for the three points."
Said Bobby Boswell: "We didn't underestimate them. We knew they were champions last year. But they had nothing to lose. They really poured it on at the end and we didn't do well enough to regroup."
But despite getting just one shot on goal after the break, Nowak was upset his team allowed the late equalizer.
"We were ready from the beginning but we didn't play our game," he said. "We didn't play up to our potential. I was pretty upset with a couple of guys. We need to get back to work and make sure the fitness part is going to be much better than it was today."