New England Soccer Today

Heaps: I’m Coaching for My Job Every Game

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Jay Heaps knows the deal: he’s the head coach of a 6-9-5 team in 10th place team with the regular season more than halfway complete. In other words, he’s on the hot seat.

Even though job security for MLS managers is inherently fleeting, Heaps said he wasn’t overly concerned about his employment status going into Saturday’s match.

“I think I’m coaching for my job every game,” said Heaps. “I signed up for this. I look at the work we do, and try to prepare our guys, and that’s what I focus on.”

Entering the team’s inter-conference clash vs. Galaxy, the Revolution hadn’t picked up maximum points since Jun. 3. They’d left points on the pitch in each their last pair of home games. Making matters worse: they were eliminated in U.S. Open Cup play due to a lethargic performance in front of a boisterous crowd at Harvard University two weeks ago.

“For me, no one is happy with where we’re at,” Heaps said. “I think from every angle we can be better. From the coaching staff, we feel we prepare the guys, but if there’s something we’re missing, then we need to get better at it.”

One thing Heaps admitted needs improvement are the team’s split-personality performances in recent weeks. The gaffer said he’s seen strong starts go to waste due to poor form in the waning moments, and vice versa.

Heaps also mentioned that bringing in reinforcements could also help.

“If we need to get more players to support the group we have, then we need to get more players,” Heaps said. “Can we better in the field in tight moments? Absolutely. So for me to sit here and point fingers at people, and I’ll take the biggest of them all, it would get us nowhere.”

The refusal to point fingers has helped the Revolution survive summertime swoons (see: 2014 and 2015) to reach the postseason in the past. But it wasn’t enough last season, and it remains to be seen whether that attitude alone can deliver them back to the playoffs in 2017.

Whether it is or not, and whether the Revolution make a season-altering signing before the close of the transfer window, Heaps has put the burden of getting his team back on track squarely on his shoulders.

“It’s my job to come in every week and prepare the team, and I thought we were really well prepared (tonight),” Heaps said. “We have to be same team that starts the game that finishes the game.”

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