FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – In at least a few markets around MLS, searing temperatures approaching triple digits wouldn't draw more than a passing glance.
In New England, those same steamy days break records. The index touched 100 degrees at Logan Airport on Tuesday for the first time in years, while highs in Providence, R.I., (102 degrees) and Bradley International Airport in suburban Hartford, Conn., (102) set new marks.
The heatwave has also caused locals to alter their plans, and New England head coach Steve Nicol is one of them.
“Yesterday, we trained normally, but you just can't do it,” Nicol told MLSsoccer on Wednesday morning. “You're asking for trouble, training in 100 degrees.”
In order to combat the conditions, Nicol shifted the scheduled training sessions for Wednesday and Thursday from the usual 10 a.m. start time to 8 a.m. to avoid the intensive midday sun. He also allotted more breaks to ensure his players received the proper hydration.
Although the warm weather has impacted the schedule, New England midfielder Chris Tierney said the alterations haven't affected the Revs' work on the training field.
“I'm not sure that it has,” Tierney said. “We have stuff we need to work on. You never know if it's going to be 90 degrees at kickoff. We go out and we do things the same way. Obviously, we came out earlier today to make sure we don't hit the peak of the heat, but we're doing the things we need to work on. It's the same as it would be if there were mild temperatures.”
With Los Angeles slated to visit on Saturday, Tierney said he and his teammates can't afford to let the heat distract them from their goal of figuring out how to end their three-match losing streak against the Western Conference leaders.
“We obviously have a lot of stuff that we need to sort out,” Tierney said. “This week of training is as important as any week of training this year. We're focused and we're working hard. We're doing everything we can to get ready for this weekend.”