New England Soccer Today

Player Ratings: New England Revolution vs. Vancouver Whitecaps

Lee Nguyen put in a fantastic performance in the Revs 4-1 win over Vancouver. (Photo: Tony Biscaia/RevsNet)

After each match the contributors to New England Soccer Today will rate the performances of the New England Revolution players who made an appearance on a 1 to 10 scale (1 horrendous, 5 average, 10 perfection). This week Brian O’Connell and Sean Donahue contributed ratings for the New England Revolution’s 4-1 victory over the Vancouver Whitecaps.

Matt Reis – Average Rating: 6.25 (Brian 6, Sean 6.5)
Weary Whitecaps’ didn’t present many challenges, but looked stout throughout the night. Best save came on Le Toux’s 4th minute breach. (Brian) … Made a few huge saves, including one early on Le Toux, but will probably want the goal – which snuck through his legs – back. (Sean)

Chris Tierney – Average Rating: 6.5 (Brian 6.5, Sean 6.5)
Good passes, worked well with Nguyen, and put in a solid performance after the early hiccup on LeToux’s assist to Hassli. (Brian) … First five minutes, along with the rest of the defense, were worrying, but Tierney stepped up the rest of the game and provided some nice width and sharp passing going forward. (Sean)

A.J. Soares – Average Rating: 6.25 (Brian 6.5, Sean 6)
Exposed early on LeToux and Hassli efforts, but tightened up as the game progressed. Worked well with McCarthy. (Brian) … Caught napping, along with the rest of the defense, early, but stepped it up to shut down Vancouver after that. Passing wasn’t great, however. (Sean)

Stephen McCarthy – Average: 6 (Brian 6, Sean 6)
Positioning was excellent, distribution not the best, but good tackle on Chiumiento despite the yellow card. (Brian) … Caught out a bit on the goal and like Soares, passing wasn’t great, but after the first five minutes kept the Whitecaps at bay. (Sean)

Kevin Alston – Average Rating: 6.75 (Brian 7, Sean 6.5)
Made some nice early runs, but most importantly, silenced Salgado. (Brian) … Great effort all night on both sides of the pitch, but still some indecisiveness in the final third. (Sean)

Lee Nguyen – Average Rating: 9 (Brian 9, Sean 9)
Two goals and an assist made it one of the best performances in Revs uniform in recent memory. (Brian) … In actuality, he probably didn’t touch the ball as much as we’ve seen in some games, but he made the most of it when he did. Two goals, including what may be goal of the week, an assist, 80% passing accuracy and some solid defensive work. (Sean)

Shalrie Joseph – Average Rating: 7.25 (Brian 7, Sean 7.5)
Good effort on the 33rd minute goal, and kept the Revs attack organized for much of the night. (Brian) … It may have gone unnoticed, but Joseph put in perhaps his strongest performance of the season. Put in the effort on both sides of the pitch, score his first goal of the season and completed an impressive 88% of his passes. (Sean)

Clyde Simms – Average Rating: 6 (Brian 6, Sean 6)
Gave it a couple of goes early, but chipped in wherever/whenever needed. (Brian) … Simms has definitely had better games this season, but he was still all over the pitch made some important plays in midfield. (Sean)

Benny Feilhaber – Average Rating: 5.5 (Brian 5.5, Sean 5.5)
Went right at ‘Caps defense and active in the attack early, but committed more to the defensive effort as the game progressed. (Brian) … Heavily involved in the attack early with mixed results. His pass to Sene helped lead to Joseph’s goal. (Sean)

Saer Sene – Average Rating: 6.75 (Brian 7, Sean 6.5)
Strong and slick with the ball at his feet; great finish on the 24th minute goal. (Brian) … Great finish on his goal, but other shots still seemed targeted right for the goalkeeper. He’s clearly not the same caliber as Taylor Twellman when it comes to finishing, but the skill he continues to show should lead him to be the Revs first double-digit scorer since Twellman in 2007. Caught in possession a few times, but otherwise a solid outing. (Sean)

Blake Brettschneider – Average Rating: 5.25 (Brian 5, Sean 5.5)
Seemed to stay wide a lot and looked a little out of rhythm paired with Sene. (Brian) … Surprisingly, seemed more comfortable as the lone striker in Salt Lake. Effort was clearly there, but struggled to combine with his teammates going forward. His blocked shot led to Joseph’s goal, perhaps his biggest contribution of the night. (Sean)

Diego Fagundez – Average Rating: 5.5 (Brian 5.5, Sean 5.5)
A few good touches, but didn’t make much of an impact off the bench with the game already decided. (Brian) … Had a little trouble breaking free of some physical defense and his only shot was blocked, but he worked hard off the bench and made smart passes the few chances he had. (Sean)

Fernando Cardenas – Average Rating: 5.5 (Brian 5.5, Sean 5.5)
Antsy to make a big play, but had his only shot blocked in limited duty. (Brian)  … Similar showing to Fagundez. Only shot blocked and perhaps tried to do a bit too much himself on the rare chance he got. (Sean)

Alec Purdie –  Average Rating: N/A (Brian 5.5, Sean N/A)
Contributed a handful of good passes as the Revs brought the game to the final whistle. (Brian) … Not enough time to make a real impact, but passing was good the few times he did see the ball. (Sean)


  1. Chris B

    May 13, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    For me, every Revs player played really well. I think everyone deserves over a 5/10 which is pretty much what you guys said. Obviously, giving up the first goal is the only blemish but without the Vancouver goal, would we have scored 4?

    Also Heaps made very good substitutions and didn’t have to take someone off due to injury so Heaps gets an 8 or 9/10 as manager tonight.

  2. rick sewall

    May 13, 2012 at 4:03 pm

    I agree with Chris B. Good coaching by Heaps.

  3. Brian

    May 13, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    What a wonderful night. The crowd, albeit disappointing in size was also more engaged than usual, at least the section I was in. I guess it is hard not to be given the scoreline.

    Tough to point out flaws given the result but I have a few comments, the distribution out of the back continues to be not one of our strengths. (how good would Nesta look in Revs kit to solve that, I know not gonna happen given the money and the turf).

    I am starting to feel Benny might not be able to excel in the current system. I feel like he won’t be able to reach his potential unless his consistently has a central midfield role. Come to think of it there is so much talent in the midfield and they all seem to drift inward a bit more rather than stretch the width. That means the wing play is left to Tierney & Alston to make the overlapping runs (or Sene to stretch wider). Perhaps we will obtain a true winger midseason (Nyassi is not the answer).

    Anyway, tough to complain, best Revs game I saw in a long time and certainly Nyugen’s goal was one I fell out of my seat when I witnessed it!

  4. Brendan

    May 14, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    Sort of unrelated, but where does this hatred of McCarthy as a center back come from? I haven’t seen anything on this site, thankfully. It’s been measured and objective here, but other places, especially the Revs own Facebook, people are killing him.

    I don’t see the problem. Would people prefer Lozano, who is not in game shape, coming off of an injury and totally out of synch with AJ? McCarthy has done well with his positioning and hasn’t, in my opinion, been solely responsible for any of the goals that people seem to think he has.

    Any opinions on this from you guys? Am I on an island being happy with him as a mainstay?

    • Chris B

      May 14, 2012 at 2:56 pm

      I used to be a McCarthy at CB hater but I was converted after the Colorado game and now after this win it is re-enforced. It just feels weird because he is a second year midfielder being converted to CB and Lozano was brought in for CB but the partnership of AJ and Macca is too solid to disturb right now.

    • Sean Donahue

      May 14, 2012 at 3:25 pm

      I think you can’t underestimate the importance of communication when it comes to center backs/defense. McCarthy has been solid and can still improve, but perhaps most importantly he works well and communicates well with Soares. I don’t doubt Lozano with his experience is probably a more talented center back at this point in his career, but regardless of Soares basic Spanish skills, the two haven’t quite seemed on the same page when playing together.

      If Lozano had been healthy all preseason and saw a lot of time with Soares and started along with him all season — thus learning each other’s tendencies — communication issues could be masked. Unfortunately, as it is, I think the communication issues compounded by the injuries/the lack of playing time and lack of reserve games have hurt Lozano’s ability to fit into the defense. To me, you can’t afford to use regular season games to fix those problems, especially when McCarthy has been playing well.

  5. KidKalik

    May 16, 2012 at 10:44 pm

    @ Brendan,
    Thank you for your post. I agree. Watching the Revs last year a big deal was made of the inability to control the mid-field. Personally, I think that was a result of very little controlled possession out of the back. I think McCarthy does that pretty well – he is learning the CB position but his touch on the ball is mid-field quality and that is adding to the attacking mind set that Heaps is looking for this year. I’ve also got to tell you that I love his passion – head to head with Omar on Saturday, it wasn’t chippy – it was more like “I will own you, we are the Revs and this is our pitch”. I sure haven’t seen that from this team in the last couple of seasons. I do think the pairing of AJ and McCarthy will pay dividends this season – they can only get better. I think you’ve also seen AJ a bit more comfortable on the ball in the last few games – not just clearing it out or smashing it down the pitch. He is taking touches and distributing.

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