New England Soccer Today

Jones Relishes Villain’s Role

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Jermaine Jones had a message for his detractors during Wednesday’s press conference at Gillette Stadium: Bring it on.

Jones, a fierce competitor who’s never met a challenge he didn’t like during his 14-year career, received waves of criticism across the country after playing an especially physical brand of football against the Red Bulls during Sunday’s first leg of the Conference Finals.

“In a different way, I love it when people a little bit start to hate me,” Jones said. “If it’s outside in stadiums like the people in New York, I can take that.”

Jones was taken to task by plenty of pundits for his scissor-style tackle on Dax McCarty in the first half of Sunday’s match, which the Revolution won 2-1. The U.S. International was cautioned for the foul, but many felt a red card was warranted instead.

One of those players in favor of a Jones ejection: McCarty himself, who took to Twitter shortly after the match to chide Allen Chapman’s decision to issue a yellow card.

Some expected the MLS Disciplinary Committee to suspend Jones for Saturday’s second leg, but Revolution coach Jay Heaps indicated on Tuesday he wasn’t expecting the league to issue a ban to his star midfielder.

As for Jones, he wouldn’t be surprised if the Red Bulls, who fouled him seven times on Sunday, try to bait him into another booking on Saturday in the hopes of gaining an advantage given the one-goal deficit and the suspension of Bradley Wright-Phillips.

“Maybe,” Jones said about such a prospect. “They already tried it already on Twitter, but I’m relaxed with that. I know that both sides played hard in New York, it was a hard game, but it’s still a playoff game.

I will see what happens on Saturday, but I will still go out and try to do everything I can to bring New England to the final.”

Meanwhile, Jones, who’s been credited as a driving force behind the Revolution’s autumn-time surge, said that the only opinions that concern him are those inside the locker room.

“I know my whole team,” Jones said. “The whole club has their trust in me. What people text about me or say about me, I don’t care so much.”

Leave a Reply