FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — New England defender A.J. Soares felt the impact of Saturday's 3-2 home defeat to Chivas USA even though he didn't feature in the match.
Soares missed out through suspension for only the second time this season and watched his side struggle to contain the Rojiblancos at Gillette Stadium.
“I hate losing whether I'm on the field or on the bench — it doesn't make a difference to me,” Soares told MLSsoccer.com on Wednesday. “Seeing a loss like that sucks and it's tough to take. When you're up top, you can see a lot of things.”
Soares' ability to see the field has served him well so far in his rookie campaign. The California product has transitioned smoothly to the professional game and established himself as a reliable option in central defense.
“He's been a bit of a mainstay, the one guy that's always been there as a constant,” Revolution coach Steve Nicol said. “It's important for us that he's playing again.”
Chopping and changing isn't anything new for a Revs back four that has dealt with injuries and suspensions for much of the season, and Soares' return from suspension will dictate at least one alteration in defense.
Although the revamped back line faltered as New England sent additional numbers forward against Chivas, Soares said he believes the group can rebound as he eschews his role as a spectator and resumes his normal duties ahead of Saturday's visit to Columbus (7:30 pm ET, watch LIVE online).
“We need to keep with the communication and stick to the game plan,” Soares said. “We know what to do. You've seen games where we've defended well and played well as a whole. We need to go into the game and think about it.”