New England Soccer Today

#NERevs Predictions: Is it Make or Break for Heaps, Burns?

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Welcome to the third of a five-part series of Revolution-related predictions for the upcoming season. Yesterday, we gave our predictions for the team’s defensive MVP. Today, our writers weigh in on whether 2017 is a make or break season for coach Jay Heaps and general manager Michael Burns.

By the way, we want your take, too! Feel free to leave your vote in the comments section!

Sean Donahue: If Jay Heaps isn’t on the hot seat entering the 2017 season, it’s certainly getting to the wrong side of balmy. After leading the team to MLS Cup in 2014, the club’s performances — and results — have steadily regressed since despite retaining the majority of the club’s core from that season. If the club is on the wrong side of the red line come mid-July, it could mark the end of Heaps’ tenure. As for Mike Burns, the metric may be slightly different. Burns should be judged largely on the performances of Angoua, Delamea and Kouassi this season. If two of the three turn out to be busts, the club will need to consider some serious changes going forward.

Greg Johnstone: This is probably the most important season for Jay Heaps and Mike Burns of their tenure, particularly Heaps, who is in a contract year. While the MLS Cup appearance in 2014 may have bought them job security in prior years, the last two seasons have been disappointing and it would be hard to look back on 2017 as another year of Kamara, Agudelo, and Nguyen wasted if the Revolution miss or get bounced early in the playoffs.

Jose Pereira: Yes, this is a make or break season. The talent is there, whether fans agree or not, it is there. The experience is there from all the international players or players who have played over seas. Antonio Mlinar Delamea and Benjamin Angoua, along with Xavier Kouassi, should help with the defensive which was an issue last year. The big issue with the team right now is the lack of defensive depth and roster depth. Fans should have high expectations this year, as in previous years.

Brian O’Connell: Yes. Two years ago, the Revolution were defending conference champions. Now, they’re coming off a season in which they missed the playoffs, looking flat and uninspired too often while doing so. Plus, with only 23 players on the roster, you have to wonder: what kind of sense does it makes to carry seven open spots? Forget the excuses. If the Revolution fall short of the postseason again, then it’ll be time to go for Heaps and Burns.


  1. Mike

    March 1, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    I hope the Krafts do what they did with Clavijo and step in quickly – by the end of May – if results are bad to start the year. A season can be salvaged with the right manager – Seattle is a great example.

  2. pauloblitzz

    March 1, 2017 at 8:13 pm

    Burns needs to go 1st but hopefully things go well and they keep their jobs

  3. J metsch

    March 3, 2017 at 4:00 pm

    I think this SHOULD be make or break this year FOR BOTH. No creativity from either. I really believe Jones got us to 2014. Seeing the record before he came you know we wouldn’t be in LA at the end. And we got Jones with a flip of a coin. The FO makes it sound that 2015 was successful. Yes . We were above the line…backend ed barely. It took a year later than the fans to see that the formation needed to change. And 442 didn’t surprise anyone. Though Jay blamed Kamara for lateness in implementing. Bringing in Sigi would be an insult to all NE.

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