New England Soccer Today

Could the Revs Benefit from the Silverbacks Demise?


On Monday, the NASL suspended operations of the Atlanta Silverbacks, one of the longer-running lower division sides in the U.S. But the demise of the Peach State selection could actually serve to benefit the Revolution this winter if the front office moves quickly.

With preseason camp less than two weeks away, and no fewer 10 vacancies, the Revolution are likely to call in a few trialists for the winter while they try to fill out the roster. And with a collection of second-division players suddenly searching for jobs, well, there’s sure to be a few who’ll be worth a look at the first-division level.

One player who the Revolution might want to take a closer look at is forward Pedro Mendes, who also suited up for the Rhode Island Reds in 2012. The 25-year-old native of Brazil collected seven goals and added two assists in 19 matches for Atlanta last year. Five of those goals came in a seven game span in which he won NASL Player of the Week.

Another player worth a glance: ex-MLS defender Rauwshan McKenzie, who played in 29 games for Atlanta in 2015. At 29, the Hartford, Ct. native has plenty of experience, and at very least, would give the Revolution some much-needed depth in the rear. The Timbers presumably still hold his MLS rights, but that hasn’t stopped the Revolution before.

Kosuke Kimura is another former MLS defender who could aid the local XI during their preseason preparations. The 31-year-old Japanese fullback was part of two successful Red Bulls sides in 2013 and 2014, and with nine years of experience in MLS, the Revolution could do a lot worse than bring in Kimura for a trial.

Then, of course, is former Revolution striker Matt Horth, who played in 18 games for the Silverbacks last season. The 26-year-old forward scored 10 goals as a rookie in NASL, and his familiarity with the Revolution setup could give him the leg up over other unknown products.

Last, but certainly not least, is the sudden availability of Silverbacks coach Gary Smith, who led the Colorado Rapids to a MLS Cup title in 2010. If Revolution coach Jay Heaps is looking to expand his coaching staff, Smith would undoubtedly be a valuable addition.


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