New England Soccer Today

Will USOC Loss Weigh on Revs Minds?

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/capturedimages.biz

For a brief time during last year’s U.S. Open Cup title match against FC Dallas, the Revolution found themselves in command, poised to secure the club’s second Cup title thanks to an early Juan Agudelo goal. Then, within a matter of nine minutes, the dream was dashed.

Yes, Dallas’ talented attack eventually buried the Revolution to the tune of a 4-2 score to hoist the vaunted Lamar Hunt Trophy. But rest assured the locals will look for a way to translate the disappointment from the Cup final loss and flip it in their favor at Dallas on Saturday.

“You want to hold on as much as you can – if it’s a positive way,” Revolution midfielder Kelyn Rowe told the media on Monday. “Some guys will hold their heads and say, ‘I didn’t play well that game,’ and it may transfer over in a negative way. But if you have a positive kind of fire in your belly, absolutely, carry as much as you can.”

The Revolution will return 12 players who saw the field in last year’s title match, and to some of them, the memory of walking off the Toyota Stadium pitch showered by the confetti celebrating Dallas’ victory hasn’t become any less bitter. One of those players is Revolution right back Andrew Farrell, who reflected on last year’s Cup final ahead of Saturday’s match.

“Obviously, I think last year, making the finals was exciting,” Farrell told the media on Monday, “and obviously disappointing not taking that home.”

But to Farrell, the humbling march back to the locker following the Cup final loss wasn’t any different than any other he’s had to endure during his five-year MLS career.

“Not for me necessarily, I just want to win every game,” Farrell said. “Obviously, it’s going to be a tough environment, but obviously, we’re hoping to get the three points.”

Getting three points Saturday might seem like a pipe dream for a team that hasn’t won at Dallas since the George W. Bush administration.

Further, the defending Open Cup champions have only proven themselves just as strong, if not stronger, this year. They claimed a Champions League semifinal win over Pachuca on Wednesday, and boast a roster that’s brimming with young attacking talent.

Despite Dallas’ collective strength, count on the Revolution to muster up whatever motivation they can find – whether it’s from last year’s Cup loss, or it’s in the form of getting that first win of the season – to carry them on Saturday.

“Each guy is a little different,” Rowe said. “[For] myself, yeah, [there is] a little fire in my belly. We didn’t show great in that Final, I want to make sure we show a lot better. I’m excited about this trip.”

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