FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - The New England Revolution fell 2-3 to Chivas USA at Gillette stadium on an historic night for the franchise. The match featured the MLS debuts of the Revs' first-ever Designated Player, Milton Caraglio, and also their first homegrown signing from the academy system.
Chivas received excellent contributions from Nick LaBrocca (1 goal, 1 assist) and Alejandro Moreno (2 goals) and managed to capitalize on defensive lapses from New England. The Revs, on the other hand, received goals from Shalrie Joseph off of a penalty, and had another milestone moment when Diego Fagundez scored the first MLS goal by a homegrown player.
The Revs had the first chance of the match in the 6th minute, and it was a good one. Kevin Alston found the ball out on the left flank and, when closed down, slipped an excellent lateral floor pass in to Shalrie Joseph on the edge of the eighteen. Joseph killed it and then sent a great cross to Ryan Cochrane at the far post, but the defender's onrushing header was depressingly off-target when he really should have done better.
Chivas USA had their first chance in the 11th minute when Nick LaBrocca gained control of a long ball and laid it off to Blair Gavin, but his low shot skimmed harmlessly wide. Just a minute later, Revolution newcomer Milton Caraglio gained control of the ball just outside the 18, cut inside for space and tried a low left-footed curler that bounced to Dan Kennedy and was corralled easily.
The Revolution continued to look dangerous, and in the 17th minute had another good chance. Chris Tierney sent in a left-side cross that found the head of Zack Schilawski on the penalty spot, but he was sufficiently put off by the defender to flub his header wide of the right post. Then, in the 22nd minute, a good-looking Revs counter-attack fed out to Schilawski wide on the right. The forward took a few touches and then played a nice far-post cross to Caraglio, who flicked his header back across the face of goal and just behind the foot of Chris Tierney.
To this point, the Goats had created some dangerous plays but the Revs were able to prevent them from getting much by way of shots off. That all changed in the 31st minute when Simon Elliot sprang LaBrocca free on the right flank. The Chivas number 10 had plenty of time to send in a cross to the six-yard box, and an apparent miscommunication between Reis and Darrius Barnes allowed Alejandro Moreno to reach it first and bury it.
Tierney put a free kick from a good spot just over in the 40th minute. Moreno tried to double the Chivas tally with a low shot in the 43rd but it went wide. Tierney had a left-footed effort from distance go wide in first-half stoppage time, and then McCarthy had a volley attempt blocked.
Matt Reis made the save of the match in the 58th minute after a terrible mistake from Joseph. He and Barnes both left a ball in the middle of the field that allowed Moreno to charge in on goal. He tried a curler to the far post but Reis stretched out and plucked it straight out of the air.
The next minute, another defensive lapse resulted in Nick LaBrocca being released on goal by an excellent pass. He cut into the area for a shot but had it blocked by Darrius Barnes; unfortunately, the rebound fell right back to LaBrocca with Barnes unaware, and the midfielder switched to his left and buried the second chance.
Kenny Mansally replaced an obviously gassed Milton Caraglio in the 62nd minute. Caraglio's performance was decent but obviously hampered by a lack of fitness, which will come with time. Four minutes later, the Revs made it a doubly historic match when they brought on home-grown midfielder/forward Diego Fagundez for his first ever MLS appearance. The 16-year old would not disappoint.
In the 69th minute, Fagundez received the ball wide on the left. He cut inside and skinned three Chivas USA players before making a move into the box and having his ankle clipped. The Leominster, MA resident (and still high school student) went down and earned a penalty, which Joseph promptly converted to make it 2-1.
In the 73rd minute, Sainey Nyassi went on a long dribbling run into the attacking third before cutting across the middle and playing the ball out to Benny Feilhaber wide on the left. The American international jinked and danced around three players and then attempted a very audacious chip to the far post, which Dan Kennedy just barely managed to tip over.
A good interchange in the 76th minute resulted in a good ball from Mansally out to Tierney on the left, who then slipped it to Feilhaber. Benny cut back inside and played the ball laterally to an onrushing Joseph, but the captain's first-time shot screwed wide.
It looked as though the Revs would find a second goal, but it was Chivas who found a third against the run of play. On a counter, Justin Braun played Ante Jazic free out wide to the left. Jazic sent in a low cross to Moreno, who attempted to dummy it through his legs. It didn't come off, but the deflected ball fell kindly for Moreno and the failed dummy attempt had wrong-footed Reis, who was now in no position to save the Venezuelan's angled shot.
The Revs were not finished, however. In the 86th minute, Kevin Alston picked his head up in the Revolution half and lofted a long ball toward the top of the box. Fagundez jockeyed for position and beat his marker to control the ball, and then the youngster demonstrated a clinical finish with his left foot to score his first MLS goal, and the first goal scored by a homegrown player in Revolution history.
New England had one more chance to level the scores in stoppage time. Fagundez took possession of the ball on the right flank and laid it off toward the box, but the ball was deflected back to McCarthy. The big midfielder left it for Nyassi, who tried an awkward looping cross to the other side of the box. Joseph brought it down and tried smashing a half-volley on frame, but Kennedy made a great save to keep it out, and in the ensuing melee also saved a Joseph header when it seemed destined for net.