The Spaniard started all 34 games, dazzled with consistent performances, finished with 10 goals and 14 assists, and was named 2019 MLS Newcomer of the Year. After a rocky start to the season collectively, the Revs rebounded after Bruce Arena was appointed head coach, with Gil as captain, and stormed into the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs.
That success led to raised expectations in 2020, before the league was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Amid the uncertainty that has characterized 2020, Gil isn't looking toward his future, instead enjoying these days as they come. (His contract reportedly has two one-year options following the 2020 season.)
“I don’t know what’s going to happen," Gil told MLSsoccer.com last week. "If you told me that I’d come here when I was in Spain, I wouldn’t have believed it. Soccer is a game that’s ever-changing, you have to enjoy the moment and continue to improve your game. You never know what’s going to happen.”
Gil wasn't the only exciting new Designated Player in 2019 for the Revs, who signed forward Gustavo Bou from Liga MX in the summer to attempt a playoff push. The pair quickly formed a dynamic partnership, with Bou scoring nine times and contributing two assists in 14 league appearances to help reduce the attacking burden on Gil.
“From the very first moment he got here, we had a very good relationship on the field," Gil said. "We complement each other very well. He finds gaps between and behind defenders and he’s always paying attention to what happens in the game. We complement each other very well. We have a great connection.”
The Revs are returning a strong squad under Arena for 2020 with a few key additions. Rookie center back Henry Kessler has slotted right into the team and the squad used their final Designated Player slot on another attacker, center forward Adam Buksa to form one of the league's most opulent attacking trios.
Expectations are still huge for the new-look Revs, who have yet to win MLS Cup in their long history despite making the final five times.
“(MLS Cup) is something I’d love to achieve," Gil said. "It’s our main objective this year and we’re very ambitious. Why not? We know it won’t be easy, there’s a lot of competition, but I think we’re prepared and it’s something we can reach.”
Like Gil said, you never know what's going to happen.