FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – New England native Charlie Davies kept careful watch on his hometown team. It just took him a little bit longer than he may have expected to join them.
Davies piqued the Revolution's interest at several points during his successful and tumultuous career, but the prospect of signing for the club never really made sense for everyone involved until a couple of weeks ago. The former US international striker wanted more games and a chance to play closer to his Boston-area home. And the Revs offered a chance to fulfill both of those goals with the proper dose of application.
“To me, it sounded like a no-brainer,” Davies told MLSsoccer.com after his first training session with his new teammates on Tuesday morning. "I think it's the perfect situation for me with all of the support I have here.
"I genuinely think that Jay [Heaps, Revolution coach] and the coaching staff, as well as [general manager] Mike Burns and my teammates, will allow me to get better, help the team win and push me in ways that I need to be pushed on the field. I think it's gone really smoothly, the transition.”
It is a process poised to continue this week as Heaps discerns Davies' fitness level and ponders where he fits into the side. Davies muddled through through the usual preseason rigors with Danish side Randers FC before sealing his loan move to the Revs last Friday, but he lacks the match practice of his current colleagues. Heaps said he plans to monitor Davies during the week to see how he could much he can contribute when the Chicago Fire visit on Saturday.
“The progression is to get him playing more this week and make a decision on Friday about how many minutes he can play on Saturday, if it's 90, 60, 30,” Heaps said. “I think we're talking those lower numbers, but he's been going through full fitness during preseason. His numbers look good. We just need to get him up to speed with what we're doing.”
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Davies embraces the daunting situation he currently faces. He believes he can contribute as the central striker or as one of the two wide players in Heaps' 4-1-4-1/4-3-3 setup once he proves his fitness. And he knows that this opportunity – a chance to propel the Revs' playoff push by showing he still possesses the ability to score goals at the MLS level – warrants the toil required to achieve the desired results.
“It's amazing to be back here, especially in the middle of the season when the team is making a playoff push,” Davies said. “I'm happy to be a part of that and help the team make the playoffs. I've grown up in this area. I've watched the Revolution play since the first year they started playing here. It's always been a dream of mine since I was a little kid to play professionally in my hometown. I'm really excited.”