Summer is finally here and the Boston Celtics are out of the NBA playoffs, so our professional sports viewing options are getting pretty limited beyond the bumbling Red Sox. You’re excused if you haven’t been paying attention to the New England Revolution thus far in 2012.
New England has gotten off to a perfectly mediocre start (5-7-1), giving them 16 points in their first 13 games after the regular season began way too early in March. They sit in sixth-place out of 10 teams in the Eastern Conference. The most interesting aspect about the Revs is that they’re 4-1-1 at home but only 1-6-0 on the road. They have scored 18 goals and allowed 18 for a zero goal-differential. Like most sports, winning a game on the road is difficult in soccer but the results aren’t normally that slanted, especially when shady NBA referees haven’t been seen anywhere near the Gillette field turf as far as we know. After a 2-2 March and 0-3 April, first-year head coach Jay Heaps (a former star player from Longmeadow, Mass) and his team went 2-2-1 in MLS during May (2-2-2 overall) but they won their first game in June: 2-0 vs. Chicago Fire in Foxborough on June 2.
The Revs host a quality Eastern Conference foe-Columbus Crew (4th place)-this Saturday night (7:30 p.m., CSNE), then travel to Toronto FC (1-9-0)-the worst team out of 19 in MLS-on June 23 (4:30 p.m., CSNE). New England wraps up the month against another quality opponent, the Seattle Sounders (3rd in West) on June 30 (7:30 p.m., CSNE).
French striker Saer Sene has been quite a find for the Revolution in his rookie season. He already has piled up seven goals and he has two assists. Veteran goalkeeper Matt Reis has started every game for the Revs, notching two shutouts in the process. Defender Chris Tierney (a local product that went to Noble & Greenough in Dedham before UVA) has played well with a goal and three assists, the same numbers as long-time Revolution center midfielder Shalrie Joseph. Both players have started 12 games but Reis and defender A.J. Soares are the true ironmen, who have started in all 13 games so far this season.