New England Soccer Today

Rookie Wright Making Early Waves

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

Like so many moments that occur during the winter months in MLS, Revolution rookie forward Brian Wright’s introduction to MLS action will probably forgotten by many before long. But those early moments nevertheless served as a promising start.

Wright, who was selected by the club in first round (20th overall) of the 2017 SuperDraft, put the Revolution in a position to grab an early goal during Tuesday’s preseason opener against Minnesota United FC. The University of Vermont product drew a penalty in the 12th minute to set the stage for Teal Bunbury, whose subsequent try was saved.

“It felt good to be able to draw the PK,” Wright told the media after the match. “Unfortunately, we couldn’t score, good save by the keeper. But I thought we were all over them at the beginning there. They had some chances, but I thought it was a pretty even game in the first half.”

The 21-year-old forward was partnered with Bunbury up top in Tuesday’s contest. While the Revolution were held scoreless in the first half, coach Jay Heaps nevertheless liked what he saw from the first-rounder.

“He drew a penalty kick in his first couple minutes, was clean on the ball,” Heaps told the media after the match. ” (He’s) someone that we’ve really liked so far this early into camp.”

Like many MLS freshman, Wright, who scored 39 goals in four years at Vermont, admitted that the biggest challenge he’s faced is getting used to the speed of play of the professional ranks. Then again, he wasn’t expecting it to be easy.

“Doing the double (training sessions0, legs are tired, (and there’s) soreness,” Wright said. “(You’re) just making sure you’re taking care of your body, getting your rest when you need it. Getting that first week out of the way felt pretty good. Just look to keep going forward.”

Another reason why the rookie forward might be needing more time on the training table?

“I think he’s doing a lot more work defensively than he’s probably had to in the past being more of a lone striker,” Heaps said. “We’re having our two forwards – at least in this part of camp – we’re playing with two strikers right now, really making those guys work for that game.

“I think that’s step one – realizing, wow, it’s going to be a longer process in terms of getting himself to another level of fitness.”

Barring injuries, that level of fitness will come for Wright as the winter progresses. In the meantime, the Revolution rookie appeared to be pleased with Tuesday’s performance on the whole.

“It felt good,” Wright said. “(It was my) first time playing, just trying to build some fitness as preseason goes on. But I thought overall it went well, (the) first 45 (minutes) for us. Unfortunate to give up that goal, but other than that, it looked pretty good.”

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