By Ryan Fleming
Throughout the New England Revolution’s season there have been hints that times were going to get better. Players coming back from injury, managing a win or a tough point, were some of the faint signs. Then, reality came crashing back down to earth.
The Revolution, who are 1-7-2 in their last ten games have had almost every string of bad luck come there way. That is, except for the recent return of longtime Revs keeper, Matt Reis. Not even Reis could turn a “L” into a “W” for the struggling Revolution.
New England (3-8-2, 11 pts.) have scored a lackluster three goals in their last seven games, making their offensive woes front and center. One of the major problems for the Revolution has been finishing in the final third of the field. When players get their opportunities, which is seldom, their decision making is poor and sometimes embarrassing. Rookie forward Zack Schilawski had a few good chances to put the Revs level with or even in the lead in last weekend’s 1-0 defeat at the hands of the Chicago Fire, but the inexperienced striker put his efforts wide or failed to connect.
“The final third: whether it’s the final ball, whether it’s the finish. We had some chances,” New England coach Steve Nichol said after last Saturday’s loss. “You can’t fault the effort and the commitment, but it’s just the quality at the end of it just isn’t there.”
When the Revs travel to Utah to take on Real Salt Lake (7-3-3 24 pts.), it signifies the upcoming midseason point and a true reason to worry if your a Revs fan or player. The Revs are currently six points out of a playoff spot and have played one more game than the Fire, who as of now, own the last Eastern Conference slot.
“We just got to put it together,” Shalrie Joseph said after Saturday’s game. “ At the end of the day we aren’t just doing the stuff that is going to get us the points that we need.”
RSL are sitting second in the Western Conference, not really famished when it comes to talking about points. It may be asking too much of the Revolution to come back to Gillette with three all-important points, but surely one will be good enough for the Revolution, when points are at a premium.
Ryan Fleming is a writer and editor for The Soccer Guys. He can be reached at email@example.com.