New England Revolution captain Michael Mancienne urged his teammates to “wake up” after suffering a 6-2 blowout loss to Orlando City SC in their final match of the Orlando City Invitational preseason tournament on Wednesday night, warning them that their 2019 season could already be in danger before it’s even begun.
“It's a reality check. We all need to wake up,” said the English center back. “The season is right around the corner now. It doesn't matter if it's a preseason game. Every game from now until the season is a game that we need to win to get momentum going into the season. It's a hard lesson. It's a hard pill to swallow, to be honest. We got to take that lesson and we've got to move forward now and pick ourselves up.”
Playing against an Orlando side featuring several reserves and youngsters, the Revs leaked six goals in the game’s first hour before netting two late consolation strikes, and were repeatedly exposed in transitions and moments of one-on-one defending.
“To be honest, it all happened so quick. I think once we conceded that first goal in the second half, things kind of fell apart and we were a little bit rattled,” said Mancienne. “We were a little bit all over the place. But that's when we need to have composure. We need people to have composure on the ball to steady the game and calm the game down – to take the sting out of the game and not concede that next one. If it means kicking the ball down the field and us squeezing up, then that's what we have to do.”
Wednesday’s humbling result, and their captain’s subsequent message, effectively cranks up the pressure on the Revs to perform at a high level in their next preseason match, a meeting with Icelandic club KR Reykjavik at IMG Academy on Saturday (3 pm ET).
New England are now 1-4-2 in preseason play; they open the regular season with a visit to FC Dallas on March 2.