TBM Predicts 2014 MLS Regular Season: Week 12 - Revolution vs. DC United

Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

In a sans video edition of TBM Predicts, has Jake's FIFA14 figured out how to score goals? Or will the goal-less draw fest continue for the sparkling in-form virtual Revs?

Normally I'd be looking forward to this simulation. Top two teams in the Eastern Conference, both teams in form on winning streaks, lots of green stat increases all around. Lee Nguyen is a 75 overall and the Revs as a team appear on FIFA14's "In Form" team list at the loading screen with six Revs getting positive stat bonuses this week and four for DC.

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION LINEUP (4-2-3-1)

Knighton+; Barnes, Farrell, Soares+, Tierney+; Dorman [C] (Rowe 54'); Bunbury, Kobayashi (Caldwell 57'), Nguyen+, Fagundez+; Mullins+ (Davies 75')

D.C. UNITED LINEUP (4-4-2)

Hamid+; Korb, Boswell [C]+, Parke, Cristian; DeLeon, Arnaud (Silva 570', Kitchen (Jeffery 57)', Neal (Caskey 75'); Espindola+, Rolfe+

MATCH HIGHLIGHTS

Darrius Barnes basically took over the in 15th minute on both ends, creating a turnover and sending a through ball to Teal Bunbury that lead to a blocked cross and then stopped a DC counter attack by forcing a cross behind Brad Knighton's goal.


Lee Nguyen played in Patrick Mullins in the 25th minute and got the ball back twelve yards away from goal but the shot was blocked. He would make no mistake 10 minutes later firing home a rebound after Bill Hamid came off his line to stop Mullins one-on-one and give the virtual Revs a 1-0 lead. Knighton would be called into action in first half stoppage time, denying a Cristian Fernandez effort from the top of the box.

In the second half, Fabian Espindola made a darting run into the box only to be stonewalled by A.J Soares on a good tackle. DC tried to patiently build from the back put always ran into timely tackles by the Revs defense. DC would dominate possession in the second half, finishing the game with a 60-40 advantage. Chris Rolfe would be played into the box following a Scott Caldwell turnover in midfield but would flash his shot wide in the 82nd. Espindola would find Silva in the box in stoppage time but his first time effort would be off target to end the game.

WHY THIS SIMULATION WILL BE RIGHT

Because this is classic Revs: work and defend hard, get forward quickly and finish the few chances you have. The Revs are usually out possessed and/or out shot by their opponents, but last year were one of the most clinical finishing teams in MLS. It is amazing how bogged down these simulations get in the midfield, but virtual Lee Nguyen and Perry Kitchen are really fun to watch as two-way players. Both midfielders had 4 tackles apiece and sported 100% passing rates. The passing numbers won't be perfect but they're both really good. Also, while FIFA14 isn't aware of the Revs unbeaten and shutout streak at home, that counts for something too.

WHY THIS SIMULATION WILL BE WRONG

Mainly because Chris Rolfe right now is not missing the target from anywhere near the box. His chance was from a tight angle but it wasn't impossible and should have at least tested Knighton and possibly given a teammate a chance to put home a rebound. Twice the Revs had the ball tackled away in their own third and gave DC good chances to create a shot. The simulation was not kind to DC on these occasions but in real life more often than not those turnovers end up in the back of the net. Oh, and Eddie Johnson was still on "suspension" because FIFA14 always uses the previous game's lineup, so he'll be available for the game.

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