Despite the 0-4 loss in the last game against CF Montréal, the injury-ridden New England Revolution has been in good form. In their prior five matches, the Revs had three draws and two wins.
Two of the draws and one of the wins came in games away from home. With eight matches left in the season, New England will hope to regain some of their injured players and create a strong push for the playoffs.
Home stretch important for a spot in the playoffs
In the last eight games of the season, the team will play five matches at home. Continuing their unbeaten streak at Gillette is key to keeping themselves above the playoff line.
The last time they lost at home was against NY Red Bulls on April 2nd. Since then, the team has found inspiration from an average of nearly 22,000 fans showing up to make it a true fortress. The Revolution won four and drew five during that time.
The next three matches New England play will be at home. They will face two Eastern Conference teams in crucial matches versus Chicago Fire and NYCFC. As well as facing the LA Galaxy, a team that has performed similarly to the Revs this year.
Let’s revisit our worries after the next three.
New England Revolution injury report should grow smaller soon
"We have an awful lot of injuries. We have guys that are back in Foxborough that should have been on this trip playing, so that hurts our team, but hopefully in the next week we can do a little bit better and get some guys back."
Bruce Arena had those words to say in the post-game media availability on Saturday. Prior to this past weekend’s match, the Revolution had an injury report that was eight players long. Three were designated to be out for sure, five with a questionable status. None of those players played in either game in Canada.
Of the players on the list, it hurts the most that two of the Designated Players that the New England Revolution would like to rely on have been unavailable. Gustavo Bou and Giacomo Vrioni, the two other DPs besides Carles Gil, have been injured for around a month now.
Gustavo has been injured since the middle of July. For weeks now, it has been hopeful by Bruce that his star striker would return to play. The team could absolutely use his skill-set in front of the goal to help turn some of these draws into wins.
Want your voice heard? Join the Chowder And Champions team!
Vrioni was acquired from WSG Tirol at the beginning of July and subbed into his first game on July 23rd. However, since then, he has only featured as a sub and earned minutes in one other game, making his cumulative time just under 60 minutes played. Not ideal for a newcomer to the team.
We’ll be looking to reports this week and hopefully see a few names off the injury list, like Arena is hoping. I’m looking for Vrioni, at least, to come back and give Justin Rennicks some time to rest after the past week.
New additions could provide needed depth
Even though the Major League Soccer transfer window is closed, the Revs are still adding one final piece. It had been a rumor, maybe even a “hashtag signing”, but Bruce Arena on 98.5 The Sports Hub confirmed that Carles Gil’s brother, Nacho (Ignacio) Gil, will be signed.
Arena brought in three players in the recent transfer window, only one of which has seen the field since they were acquired. Christian Makoun has been useful as depth in the Central Defensive Midfielder position.
However, Ismael Tajouri-Shradi has been injured and came in injured from his previous team. Clément Diop was brought in as a number two or number three goalkeeper. Djordje Petrović has that position well covered.
If Tajouri-Shradi and Nacho Gil can provide depth in the attacking position until all attackers are healthy, the end of the season should be very interesting.