New England Soccer Today

Revolution Outlast Lightning, Dynamo for Win

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Second half goals from Jose Goncalves and Juan Agudelo after 170 minutes of weather delays due to lightning gave the New England Revolution a 2-0 win over the Houston Dynamo in front of a crowd that once totaled 21,723 prior to the poor weather at Gillette Stadium on Saturday night. Goncalves scored on a 69th minute volley off a deflected corner kick, while Agudelo came off the bench to finished off an impressive run by Lee Nguyen in the 88th minute and clinch the victory.

The match saw a 109 minute delay after just 13 minutes of playing time due to lightning and then was delayed another 61 minutes when more storms came at halftime.

“It’s never easy with what we had to deal with, but the message in the locker room was we can’t control that, we have no control of what’s happening out there, but when we step on the field we can control how we go about the game and I thought our guys were excellent in approaching it and showed some real resolve and some mental toughness,” said Revolution head coach Jay Heaps.

The win improved the Revolution to 9-9-7 (34 points) and moved the team into fourth place in the East. New England is now 3-0-1 in its last four games.

Coming off a bye week, head coach Jay Heaps made just one change to the line-up that won 3-1 against Toronto FC two weeks ago with Jermaine Jones making his return to the starting eleven in place of Daigo Kobayashi.

After an uneventful first thirteen minutes the match was suspended due to lightning strikes in close proximity to the stadium. The game would be delayed 109 minutes starting at 7:51 p.m. before resuming at 9:40 p.m. It was the first Revolution rain delay at Gillette Stadium since August 16, 2003, coincidentally against the San Jose Earthquakes who would move to Houston and become the Dynamo in 2006.

“It was tough because I felt like we were starting to find our groove and we started having more possession there and then you have to go on a break, and I think that kind of played to Houston advantage, but the guys did great to mentally prepare for it,” said Nguyen.

After the long delay, the Revolution came close to opening the scoring in the 20th minute after a Diego Fagundez shot was deflected to Lee Nguyen just a couple yards from net. Nguyen tried to beat Houston ‘keeper Tyler Deric, but Deric managed to knock the ball wide for a corner kick.

The Fire threatened three minutes later through Brad Davis after a turnover found Alex with the ball. Alex quickly played Davis who attempted a shot from just outside the box, but Bobby Shuttleworth was there to make the save.

A long ball from Jose Goncalves led to a Revolution attack in the 34th minute as Charlie Davies with his back to goal perfectly laid it off to Fagundez at the top of the box who blasted a shot on frame that Deric made a diving stop on.

The teams would go into the break scoreless where more lightning would lead to another delay—this one 61 minutes—before the game resumed at 11:30 p.m.

Four minutes into the second half Kelyn Rowe attempted a long shot from 30 yards that was denied only by a diving save from Deric which pushed if off the bar. The ball bounced straight up and hit the top of the crossbar again before going out for a corner.

A dangerous set piece just outside the box on the left side presented another opportunity for the Revolution in the 60th minute. Nguyen curled in a free kick that was just high of the net.

Four minutes later Nguyen had a chance from inside the box after a Chris Tierney cross deflected and fell to Nguyen. Nguyen’s effort was powered on frame, but well saved by Deric.

Goncalves would give New England the lead in the 69th minute after a short corner by the Revolution led to Nguyen sending in a cross. Nguyen’s service was headed back by A.J. Cochran and fell to Goncalves who volleyed it towards the near post. Deric got a hand to it, but couldn’t prevent it from going in to give the Revolution a 1-0 lead.

“I saw everyone was pretty focused on the ball and the ball came close to the penalty spot and I thought I’m going to wait on the second post in case the ball drops,” said Goncalves. “That’s what happened and the ball just came great and I took my chance for a volley. It was slippery and I thought there is no way the keeper could stop it if I caught the ball very well.”

Shuttleworth was forced to make a save in the 84th minute to prevent a potential own goal after Andrew Farrell attempted to clear a cross from the right flank with his left foot, but instead directed it on his own goal. Only a catch from Shuttleworth kept the shutout intact.

Substitute Juan Agudelo then clinched the victory for New England in the 88th minute when Nguyen made a run down the left flank and into the box before sending a low pass across goal that Agudelo got to and smashed past Deric to make it 2-0. The goal was Agudelo’s first since May 20th.

“Juan made a great run to follow up on my pass and that made it 2-0 and gave us a little cushion there,” said Nguyen.

The Revolution have another bye week before facing the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park in Chester, Pa. on Sat., Aug. 29.

“I think we have a few more games played than some of the other teams, so every game right now is very crucial for us, so we need to get maximum points,” said Revolution defender Jeremy Hall.

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