New England Soccer Today

No One to Blame But Themselves

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

Revolution coach Jay Heaps may not have been happy about the way Wednesday’s knockout match was officiated, but he wasn’t about to blame referee Mark Geiger as the reason why his team lost 2-1 to DC United.

In a match was wide open for lengthy spells, the Revolution were not only left exposed defensively a number of times, but they also failed to convert on a handful of tantalizing chances.

“Make no mistake, we could’ve been better,” Heaps told the media after the match. “We knew it was a quick turnaround from Sunday to Wednesday, and we could’ve managed the game and kept the ball better.”

The Revolution may have succeeded in getting the jump on their foes on Juan Agudelo’s brilliant overhead finish in the 15th minute, but weren’t able to build upon that lead despite finding a cluster of chances shortly afterward.

Kelyn Rowe uncovered a pair of can’t-miss opportunities in rapid fire succession following Agudelo’s wunderstrike, but could only watch Bill Hamid deny him on both occasions. Near the half-hour mark, Jermaine Jones rifled a shot that smacked off the far post.

“I thought we had a lot of good chances to make it 2-0, which I think really would’ve put us in a strong position,” Revolution left back Chris Tierney told the media after the match. “Unfortunately, we didn’t take those chances.”

While the offense came up short on those chances, the defense all but invited DC to take a few cracks of their own at the Revolution net.

Moments before the halftime whistle, Andrew Farrell made a last-ditch foul on Fabian Espindola deep in Revolution territory to set up a dangerous free kick. DC duly made the most of it when Espindola sent a curling cross into the box for Chris Pontius, who snapped the header through to make it a level match going into the half.

“I was really upset with that first goal because it was something we completely worked on,” Heaps said. “We didn’t want guys 1 v 1 where they have to cause the foul.”

A Revolution foul didn’t give DC a glorious chance to seize the lead in the 76th minute, rather, it was a handball call on Scott Caldwell inside area that set up a Chris Rolfe spot kick. Although he failed to convert, redemption arrived seven minutes later when Rolfe collected a pass from Espindola in front of goal, then buried it with little resistance.

“A couple of unfortunate breaks, and a few lapses in concentration here have cost us games this year and did tonight as well,” Tierney said. “It’s very disappointing, but it’s the situation we put ourselves in: one game and you’re out.”

Yes, Wednesday’s game could’ve played out differently had Geiger pointed to the spot after Sean Franklin handled the ball inside his own area during stoppage time. Regardless, Heaps would’ve liked to have seen more from his side on both ends of the pitch.

“We could’ve been better,” Heaps said. “It’s something we’ll have to look at first and foremost.”

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