New England Soccer Today

Fortress Breached

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Revolution’s 11 game home unbeaten streak came to an end on Saturday as the Revolution fell 2-1 to the Chicago Fire in front of 21,548 at Gillette Stadium. The win saw the Revolution’s Eastern Conference rivals Chicago, holders of the second best record in MLS, continue their surge towards the top of the standings, while the Revolution fell further below the red line as their usually reliable home form provided no points.

“I knew we were undefeated [at home] this year up to this point, I didn’t know the record last year,” said Revolution head coach Jay Heaps. “Disappointed that we didn’t get at least a point in this game. I really believe we deserved a point in the game. The first half the way we played, it wasn’t a 90 minute performance for us, but it was certainly a great second half for us and I thought we should’ve gotten a point out of it.”

The Revolution have stayed in the playoff hunt through the first half of the season largely on the back of their home form where they had gone an impressive 5-0-2 this season prior to Saturday’s loss compared to a dreadful 0-5-3 on the road.

“I don’t think [the home unbeaten streak] has been mentioned all season,” said goalkeeper Cody Cropper. “I think that we’ve just gone out and really performed at home and now we look to bounce back against Toronto away.”

The Revolution fell behind on a defensive breakdown in the 18th minute on Saturday on a Nemanja Nikolic goal and struggled to generate much offense early on. The Revolution had scored 18 goals in their 7 home games, to start the season, but managed just 6 shots with none on target in the first half.

“We lacked the crispness that we normally have when we’re playing at home and I think maybe the break had a little bit to do with it, but we’ve got to be better to start a game,” said Heaps.

The team made offensive substitutions, bringing on Juan Agudelo at halftime, Daigo Kobayashi in the 71st minute and Teal Bunbury in the 80th minute, but they found themselves behind 2-0 in the 61st minute after another defensive breakdown saw Luis Solignac score for the Fire.

Antonio Delamea would get one back in the 70th minute and the Revolution would pile on the pressure from then on, finishing the match with 24 shots and several golden opportunities missed. Despite the offensive pressure, the end result was a 2-1 loss.

“I think we can get a great lesson from this game and try to forget this game as soon as possible and start thinking about Toronto,” said Delamea.

Now the Revolution faces what may be on paper their toughest match of the year, a trip to league leaders’ Toronto, after the Revolution saw their place in the standings slip to eighth on Saturday, two spots out of the playoffs.

“I think we’re fine,” said midfield Lee Nguyen. “Obviously we know that going away is tough, but we have to steal points away. We’re going to have to get a win; we’re going to have to get results. This was just one game at home – we’ll get those points back.”

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