In a perfect world, Jay Heaps would be able to use the same lineup that he did last week in the New England Revolution's final home game against the Columbus Crew. After all, the Revs won that game 3-2 and are on the brink of a playoff berth.
But Heaps and the Revs have made a few changes to the lineup, including a forced change to the defensive unit that has been very consistent of late.
Revs Bench: Shuttleworth, Barnes, Barrett, Bengtson, Caldwell, Davies, McCarthy
CREW LINEUP: Gruenebaum; Williams, Marshall (c), Wahl, Viana; Oduro, Trapp, Tchani, Anor; Schoenfeld, Arrieta
Crew Bench: Lampson, Barson, O'Rourke, Speas, Finlay, Meram, Finley
Alston replaces Chris Tierney at left back, who despite making the trip to Columbus is not healthy enough for even the bench today. Alston replaced Tierney late in the Revs' victory last weekend. Nuygen returns from suspension and returns to his normal center midfield spot but he and Rowe will be supported by Dorman rather than rookie Scott Caldwell following Dorman's fantastic man-of-match effort last week. Imbongo replaces Jerry Bengtson up top at the holding/lone striker position.
Tierney's injury has the biggest effect on this team because of the service that he provides not only on set pieces but on the run of play. Alston's biggest task will be to shut down the Crew's right flank and Dominic Oduro. Dorman will likely be able to get more involved in the attack with his late runs that caused so much havoc in the last match. Imbongo is sitting on four yellow cards, but will only face a fine if he's booked today because accumulation suspensions do not carry over into the playoffs. Any red card suspensions would have to be served.
Houston's 2-1 victory against DC means the Dynamo have clinched a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Brendan Schimmel has the rest of the playoff scenarios here.
Kickoff is minutes away, follow along as the Revs look to clinch their first playoff berth since 2009.
COME ON YOU REVS!