The New England Revolution extended their benchmark PDL affiliation agreement with Real Boston Rams for a second season, which will see the MLS side expand its partnership with the Easton, Mass.-based side.
In April, the Revolution became one of the first clubs in MLS to enter into a formal affiliation agreement with a PDL side for the purpose of developing its college-age Homegrown Protected prospects. Under that agreement, former Revolution Academy players Cole DeNormandie, Manny Andrade and Fabio Machado all suited up for the Rams during the 2013 season.
As part of the expansion of its agreement, the Revolution will send its U-18 assistant coach Hobie Hare to Real Boston to serve as associate head coach along with Mike Madden.
“We’re pleased to continue this partnership with Real Boston Rams,” Revolution general manager Michael Burns said in a club release. “We had a great first season in 2013 and we both saw positives to expanding this relationship. The affiliation allowed our college-aged players to play meaningful games close to home, and provided us the opportunity to monitor and assess them.”
In its first season in PDL, the Rams went 4-8-2 (14 points) and finished fifth in the Northeast Division. While they may have fallen short of the PDL playoffs, the organization picked up 2013 PDL Rookie Franchise of the Year honors at last weekend’s winter meetings.
The emphasis on development saw the likes of DeNormandie (2 goals, 2 assists) and Andrade (3 goals) get regular game experience with the Rams under the watch of Revolution staff and coaches. Meanwhile, former Academy players Jack Hilger and Gustavo Santos also saw action in Easton.
“We’re delighted to expand our partnership with the New England Revolution,” Real Boston Rams general manager John Barata said in a club release. “The Revolution is a class organization and we’re proud that we’ll continue to be part of the club’s development plan. With our on-going relationship with the Revolution, Real Boston Rams has established itself as the premier developmental club in the Northeast. It is a harmonious relationship and we look forward to continued success in 2014.”
With year one in the books, Burns is optimistic that the lessons learned during 2013 will yield even more opportunities for its collegiate prospects in 2014.
“We’re hoping to roster more of our college-aged Academy players this year as we continue to build out our development model and the Rams will play a big part in that,” Burns said.