It's generally agreed that the Revolution's effort to replace Juan Agudelo in the MLS offseason fell short. Ever since his departure, the Revs haven't quite been able to replicate the on-field production that Agudelo brought to New England. Teal Bunbury, an effective contributor in 2014, seemed like he might fit the bill, but thus far he's panned out to be little more than a bit-part player, not the goal-scoring stud that Agudelo was during his time playing in navy blue. And for a while there, it looked like maybe the Revs found their replacement in rookie Patrick Mullins, who scored four goals in four games and showed some pretty good hold-up play as the lone striker. Mullins, though, has seen his goal-scoring streak run cold and New England is now on the heels of a 7-game losing streak where they've scored only three goals.
But there might just be a small glimmer of hope. Whispers on the internet (twitter, specifically) seem to be pointing to an entirely new plan altogether for replacing Agudelo: getting him back.
Just this morning the @MLSTransfers account, twitter's #1 spot for all things MLS rumors, "spilled the beans" about some information regarding the Revs and Agudelo:
We, of course, cannot claim this to be anything other than exactly what it is: a rumor. But, it's an interesting bit of information, you have to admit. Couple that with this tweet from Revolution president Brian Bilello on Tuesday stating the New England is currently looking into some "potential loans and/or transfers":
@PurkisMark yes, we're currently working on a few things. Some are potential loans and/or transfers so working with other clubs & players— Brian Bilello (@RevsPrez) July 22, 2014
Could it be that the Revolution is trying to work out Agudelo's return? We admit that there could be no connection between the two tweets. Bilello could be referring to a completely different set of possibilities for the Revs that don't include Juan. If the Revs truly are investigating the potential for his return, though, then this cryptic tweet from last night may suggest that the endeavor is a dead end for Bilello and his team:
When someone needs to learn their lesson, don't give in..— Juan Agudelo (@JuanAgudelo) July 24, 2014
Then again, maybe Agudelo's tweet is about something entirely different. Who can say? But it's hard not to at least try to connect the dots to try to spell out the storyline going on behind the scenes.
Let's pretend for a moment that it does all connect and New England is indeed trying to get Agudelo, who is now a free agent after mutually agreeing to terminate his contract with Stoke City after multiple failed attempts as securing a UK work permit, back in Foxboro. Is he still upset over a less-than-ideal offer made by New England at the end of 2013 to try to keep him on the team? Or maybe he's upset that the Revs opted to keep him through the end of the season instead of selling him to Stoke earlier in order to ensure that they could retain his MLS rights.
Basically, is it possible that Agudelo is holding some kind of grudge that might be keeping him from returning to the Revolution? Your guess is as good as ours. Maybe it's all just nothing more than a simple rumor.
Speaking of rumors, though, there's one more that we stumbled across this morning.
Thanks to @ajfknedwards on twitter, we've been clued into some interesting reports out of Argentina that local sides Belgrano and Olimpo are both interested in signing Jerry Bengtson from New England, with Belgrano being the presumed leader in the race for the Honduran striker. This article from Honduran sports outlet Diez.hn appears to support the information in the tweets below:
If Jerry is on his way out, it will be a welcome sigh of relief for Revs fans who have seen their only Designated Player score regularly for his national team but struggle consistently for the Revs ever since he arrived in New England in 2012. Perhaps the sale could even generate some pocket money to help facilitate some other transfers in.