New England Revolution

Preseason Match Report: LA Galaxy 1, Revolution 0 — Offense had difficulty converting opportunities in defeat

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Everything you need to know about the Revolution’s 1-0 preseason loss to the LA Galaxy Saturday night in quickie form:

THE SKINNY

LA scores first against the run-of-play: After dominating a good portion of the first 20 minutes — a couple of shots by Adam Buksa stopped by Jonathan Bond or blocked — the Galaxy opened the scoring in the 23rd minute, as Jonathan Perez, on a volley that appeared to bounce off Andrew Farrell‘s torso to him, headed past Matt Turner to give Los Angeles a 1-nil lead against the run of play. The Revs kept attacking, with Bond denying. Buksa was robbed — in our opinion — of a 37th-minute goal disallowed for offside; four minutes later, Buksa missed a gilt-edged opportunity to pull level at the back post, but missed badly.

No luck on offensive side: While there were a number of positives in the offense — the number of shots that challenged Galaxy starter Bond, for instance — the Revolution could not find the back of the net. They were not angular, or blazed over too much. But credit is deserved where its due, and there were some good flurries of offensive potential; Gustavo Bou had a cracker of a chance from distance that missed the target by a couple of feet to the right nearing the midway point of the second half. And Connor Presley of Revs II had a goal disallowed for offside in the second half. Still, it’s preseason, and those problems hopefully will alleviate themselves.

Turner, three DPs, and Maciel gets the start: Bruce Arena trotted out a good number of the starters from the Eastern Conference championship game and regular performers from the 2020 season to start this preseason friendly, with US international Turner anchoring the onion bag, and Farrell teaming up with newcomer AJ De La Garza as the center back pairing; DeJuan Jones and Brandon Bye got the start as the fullbacks on either side in their respective areas. And all three DPs — Carles Gil, Gustavo Bou, and Buksa — got the start in the attacking half along with veteran winger Teal Bunbury. But the surprise of the bunch was Maciel, the Revs II No. 6 in 2020, who teamed up with Tommy MacNamara in the defensive midfield. Brad Knighton, Matt Polster, and Revs II winger Presley entered at the start of the second half, with Presley at left back. Ema Boateng, Jon Bell, and Edward Kizza entered at the hour mark; a few minutes later, Collin Verfurth, Colby Quinones, Justin Rennicks, Damian Rivera, and Scott Caldwell entered for their first action of the spring. New signings Wilfrid Kaptoum, Christian Mafla, and the returning Luis Caicedo were not available for selection.

WHO’S HOT

Maciel: The recent signee from Revs II had a good first effort with New England’s first team, and in the first 15 minutes, the Brazilian had two takeaways and won a solid ball in the middle of the pitch. He disappeared for a bit, but early in the second half, he had a shot from distance that he pulled wide. Not a bad outing by him.

WHO’S NOT

New England attack: We mentioned it above, and sure, there were some good things; good crosses, for instance, by Buksa that just couldn’t find a teammate. But we’ve highlighted a couple of areas where things could have been better.

Andrew Farrell: An unlucky evening, the ball caroming off his shoulders/back area on the last touch before the goal, but there was one spot where he either pulled back or let LA’s Cameron Dunbar blow right by him. Not a good look.

Brandon Bye: He had an early cross go right through the 18. The problems of 2020 rearing its head.

WHAT SWEENS THINKS RIGHT NOW

I know that it’s preseason and that these matches mean little in how a season will go, but this offense needs to do better when teams are missing critical pieces. While the output and quality of shots were good, the Revs need to take advantage of opportune moments. They did not do that Saturday night, and therefore take an L into midweek.

ON TAP

The Revs will play the Galaxy for the second time on this west coast preseason trip on Wednesday, March 31 beginning at 10 p.m.