Juan Agudelo – New England Revolution – dribbling
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Juan Agudelo: New England Revolution turnaround comes down to Arena, staff

FOXBOUROUGH, Mass. – Last Saturday, the New England Revolution recorded a 4-1 win over Orlando City at Gillette Stadium to stretch their unbeaten run to 11 games. Head coach and sporting director Bruce Arena said the Revs were “back in the hunt” for the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs. 

The Revs currently occupy the seventh and final playoff position in the Eastern Conference standings ahead of Saturday’s home clash with Supporters’ Shield leaders LAFC (7:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+, on DAZN in Canada). 

New England is six points out of first place in the East, a position that seemed unfathomable after starting the season with a 2-8-2 record.

“Winning is fun and it’s important,” Arena said. “Everybody goes out every day and every game to try to be as good as you can be. At the end of the day, most people judge on wins and losses.” 

There were plenty of people who judged the Revs in the first third of the season, and ultimately coach Brad Friedel, who lost his job following back-to-back losses by five goals in early May. That perspective is not lost on center back Andrew Farrell

“We know how it feels to be on the other end of a run like what we’ve been doing,” Farrell said. “So it’s important to keep things in check and keep going.”

Juan Agudelo, who continues his transition to midfield, added that Arena has had a widely-positive effect on the Revs since taking over training and matches ahead of a June 2 win at the LA Galaxy

Interim coach Mike Lapper did well to stabilize the team after Friedel was fired but the wins have started to pile up under Arena. With the exception of Designated Player signing Gustavo Bou, who has played in the last three games and scored twice, the team is unchanged from the one coached by Friedel.

“To be fair, we're all trying to figure it out, but it has a lot to do with the coaching staff that's come in,” Agudelo said. “We have the same players. It wasn't working before. Now, things are clicking. It's a tough thing to come in the middle of the season as a coach and to do that, and I think that just goes to show how experienced he is.”