MLS New England Revolution

Match Report: Revolution 4, DC United 3 — Bunbury’s brace buoys Revs back into sixth

Everything you need to know about the Revolution’s 4-3 win over DC United Sunday night in quickie form:

THE SKINNY

A seven-goal thriller moves Revs back into sixth: Take a second and catch your breath, folks, as that was a wild one at Gillette Stadium Sunday. There was rain, check — rain that just didn’t cease. It made rough conditions, check. And it allowed for seven goals — four of which by the Revolution — to close out New England’s home slate with only its second win of the season at its Route 1 home. Oh, add in the fact they did it in come from behind fashion, too, and that it was the third win over DC United this year, the first time that has happened since 2005, and snapped a three-match winless skid, to boot… oh, and with New York City FC thrashing the Red Bulls at Yankee Stadium, 5-2, New England moves back into sixth in the East with one more to play. Got all that? Good. Let’s move on.

Bunbury’s brace buoys Revs: New England trailed, 2-1, at the interval, but that deficit didn’t last much longer as Tajon Buchanan crossed into the box, with Russell Canouse re-directing it into the net for an own goal, bringing the match to level terms in the 54th minute. Nearly quarter of an hour later, it was Teal Bunbury coming up with his seventh goal of the season and first at home this year: Buchanan had a great first touch to create space toward the left back, and he found TB10 waiting for it. Bunbury’s one-timer was a lightning strike, and New England had a 3-2 lead. DC pulled level at the 75th minute as Edison Flores registered his second assist of the night, coming as Gelmin Rivas scored near the spot, before Bunbury scored the match-winner. Gustavo Bou fed Adam Buksa, who saw DC goalkeeper Bill Hamid make the point-blank stop. The rebound, though, came to Bunbury, who calmly tucked it in to give the Revolution all three points.

A wild opening half hour: New England, after seeing DC have a good chunk of possession in the first few minutes, carried a great deal of the play in the first half hour — but fell behind, 2-nil, off a pair of defensive errors. In the 22nd, Yamil Asad found himself unmarked at the back stick as Tommy McNamara drifted near the spot and didn’t have his head on a swivel as Flores volleyed, and Asad one-timed it in past Matt Turner. Five minutes later, and with DC on the free kick, saw the ball plink off the wall and over to Griffin Yow, whose shot went off Revs center back Henry Kessler and in. But three minutes later, Canouse pulled Buksa down in the penalty area, Dave Gantar pointed to the spot after showing Canouse a yellow card, and Buksa — off Carles Gil’s ricochet off the woodwork — popped in his sixth of the season to pull New England to within one, 2-1, at the half-hour mark.

Gil back in XI, Bou on bench: Bruce Arena made three changes in the starting lineup from the Revs’ 1-nil midweek loss to New York, with Diego Fagundez, Kelyn Rowe — who did not even make the bench Sunday — and Kekuta Manneh sitting in favor of Gil, who made his first start since the MLS IS BACK Tournament on July 17, in the No. 10 role, with Bunbury and Buchanan also re-entering in the Nos. 7 and 11. Bou made the bench as he works back from his hammy injury; he entered at halftime, putting all three New England designated players on the pitch for the first time since July 17 until Gil left in the 70th. Not only that, McNamara started his 100th match in Major League Soccer. Fagundez, however, did not appear for only the fourth time in 2020, putting his coronation as the all-time leader for appearances in Revs history on hold until next Sunday at the earliest.

Jones injured early: DeJuan Jones left the match after 19 minutes with an unknown injury. Brandon Bye replaced him. Jones has been the de facto right back for the last four matches entering Sunday.

WHO’S HOT

Teal Bunbury: Quite frankly, an outstanding game on both sides of the football for TB10. Two goals to further entrench him in the team lead for goals this season — he has eight now — and go back through the film and watch some pretty aggressive tracking back.

Midfield in the second half: Inserting Gustavo Bou is just what this midfield needed. They were much crisper on the ball, having Bou, Gil (later Lee Nguyen), Bunbury, and Buchanan in that midfield, and Bou, obviously, was just another attacking option that DC had to contend with.

WHO’S NOT

Midfield in the first half: It really wasn’t good: McNamara lost Asad, and even though New England had most of the ball in the first 45, they had difficulty in keeping it. The midfield in transition give up a lot of space on the counter, too. But once Arena made the sub for Bou with Scottt Caldwell giving way, it stabilized things.

LET’S TALK ABOUT STATS, BABY

19 shots, 9 on target, with four goals

4 missed chances

61.9 percent of the ball

83 percent possession

11 corner kicks for New England

WHAT SWEENS REALLY THINKS RIGHT NOW

Part of me wants to reach for blood pressure meds, especially when Gil hobbled a bit in the ninth minute; I wanted to wonder what’s going on with the program’s training staff, given Orlando Sinclair pulling up when Revs II visited Wisconsin last week after he had an injury. Part of me wants to shove the Old Guard aside and let Tajon take the reins. And part of me just wants to let the Old Guard have one more moment of glory in the sun.

THEY SAID IT

“You know, the goal we got on the own goal was a goal we were looking for the whole year, telling out guys to get in front of the goal, serve some of those balls behind back lines, so that was a big goal for us to get.” — Bruce Arena on Revolution Postgame Live

ON TAP

One more match until the playoffs, and it’s on the road to Philadelphia next Sunday afternoon. 3:30 p.m. is the kick-off time on Decision Day, the Union looking to secure the Supporter’s Shield with a win.