MONTREAL – At the end of a frustrating first half, Lee Nguyen threw his New England teammates a lifeline in last night's 2-1 defeat at Montréal.
Nguyen scored his third goal against a Canadian side this season in spectacular fashion a minute before before the interval. His 35-yard effort caromed off the crossbar and off Impact goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts to restore parity at 1-1.
HIGHLIGHTS: MTL 2, NE 1
The Revs may not have particularly deserved that equalizer based on their first-half performance, but they thought at halftime that they could use that Nguyen's goal to alter the course of the match and secure a first-ever victory in Canada.
“One thing about this team: we've shown that we're resilient,” Revolution defender Darrius Barnes told MLSsoccer.com after the game. “We've shown all year that we have some fight in us, whether we're up a goal or down a goal. We showed that again tonight. Sometimes, it's going to go your way. Sometimes, it's not. Sometimes, it's your night. Sometimes, it's not.”
This particular night fell into the latter category. Revolution coach Jay Heaps made a couple of adjustments at halftime and tweaked the setup further as the second half progressed, but the pervasive problems on the night – a lack of incisiveness and sharpness in the final third – continued to linger.
When Sanna Nyassi volleyed home Justin Mapp's cross after 67 minutes, the Revs erased the good fortune provided by Nguyen's equalizer and sent themselves spiraling to a third straight defeat.
“I thought it was not a great first half for us, but I thought we were still in this because sometimes you catch a break,” Heaps said. “You don't have a good half and then you come out [and you do]. Unfortunately, we didn't have a very good second half. We had a worse second half than the first half.”
Although Nguyen's piece of brilliance did not end up turning matters around in this match, Barnes said he hopes the team's collective strength will help to engineer a response in time for Saturday's visit to Sporting Kansas City.
“We have to bounce back,” Barnes said. “We have a quick turnaround. We have a game this Saturday against one of the best teams in the league. We're really going to have to show what we are made of [as a team].”