Everything you need to know about the 10-man Revolution’s 2-1 loss to Philadelphia Union Saturday night in quickie form, complete with Bay State Soccer Sentinel insight and analysis:
Revolution drop points in second-half stoppage time: New England was poised to take home at least a point from the banks of the Delaware River after being down a man for the last half an hour plus, but an incredible shot by Philadelphia second-half sub Anthony Fontana pulled that point back off a partial clearance on a corner kick practically at the verge of full time and gave all three to the host Union. The Revolution are still winless against Philadelphia this year, and it is their second loss to the Union — and with the way this 2020 season is playing out, with regionalized, same-day travel, there may be another meeting between the two between now and the end of October.
Subs connect for Buchanan’s first MLS goal in the 81st minute: Five minutes after Gustavo Bou came on, the Argentine connected on a great give-and-go between himself and second-year pro Tajon Buchanan, who took two touches and drilled it into the net to equalize. Buchanan had been waiting for that one, his first MLS goal. The goal came eight minutes after Fontana — who came on in the 64th minute — scored the first. Buchanan’s goal was the latest the Revs have scored in a game since Carles Gil scored in the 56th minute against Montreal in Orlando.
Scoreless at the break: It was pretty even in the first 45 minutes, as both sides’ defending was up to the task of slowing the opposition down. The Revs had 46 percent possession in the first half, with 78 percent passing accuracy. In the attacking half, though, New England had 70 percent passing accuracy, with the Union stepping into the passing lanes to prevent the strikers from doing anything. There were also four shots by the Revolution including a near try by Kelyn Rowe that was just offline, with no shots on-target. The Union only had one shot on-target by Alejandro Bedoya; Rowe had a sliding stop on Brenden Aaronson, and Kacper Pryzbylko was offside on a curling shot in the 25th minute.
Three changes for Revs: Only three changes to the XI, with one biggie as Bou did not start for the first time since his debut on July 17 last year; Cristian Penilla started in his place. In addition, Henry Kessler returned to the lineup in place of Antonio Delamea, and Rowe started in place of Diego Fagundez. Lee Nguyen started the match on the bench; he and Bou entered in the 76th minute, Nguyen’s first appearance for the Revs since October 2017.
Kelyn Rowe: The Federal Way, Washington native was everywhere for New England, playing in true box-to-box style. His play in the first half was pretty darn good, having slid to stop Aaronson, and nearly beat Andre Blake on an Alexander Büttner volley that he had one-timed.
Matt Polster: He only had one giveaway, but he had a ‘mare. You’re playing on a yellow, you can’t foul tactically the way he did in the 56th minute to get sent off and have the Revolution play the last 39 minutes down a man. He will be suspended next Saturday.
Diego Fagundez: When you have fresh legs like Fagundez had — he came on with Buchanan — you’d expect him to put that clearance more than 20 yards. Instead, that last-second corner kick goes to Fontana, and he belts home the winner.
LET’S TALK ABOUT STATS, BABY
The Revolution had two shots on target tonight. Two.
They also only had 45 percent of the ball.
79 percent passing accuracy. 68 percent in the attacking half.
WHAT SWEENS REALLY THINKS RIGHT NOW
That was a dagger to the heart if you’re a Revolution supporter. Tip the cap to Fontana for an absolutely beautiful strike, of course. The thing now is we have to hope that this loss does not turn into a spiral for New England like two years ago.
Before the match, BostonSportsJournal.com soccer analyst Tom Benedetto and I shared our predos for the result. He had a Union win. I had the 2-1 right, at least.
THEY SAID IT
“Look, it was a gut punch. I was happy the way we fought back after going a man down. We were able to snag a goal there for the tie, but you have to give it to them. It was a great shot at the end. It’s a gut punch. It’s one of those that just sucks.” — Kelyn Rowe on Revolution Postgame Live
The Revolution will host New York City FC at Gillette Stadium next Saturday night in the second meeting between the two sides in 17 days. Match time is currently To Be Determined. We’ll see you when we see you!