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Revolution 2, Sporting KC 4: Three Takeaways

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Jermaine Jones isn't a center back, and two other thoughts.

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

You probably don't want to talk about it anymore, but we need to. The New England Revolution saw their unbeaten streak halted at nine on Wednesday when they were downed 4-2 by Sporting Kansas City. It was a tough match to watch as the Revs let a lead slip away for the third straight game. Here are a few thoughts from the match:

1, The Revs took a huge gamble. Scheduled to play three games in eight days, head coach Jay Heaps went with a starting lineup that featured several reserves. The changes included Jermaine Jones at center back, Diego Fagundez in the midfield, and Juan Agudelo up top. It wasn’t the ideal XI, but it was one that should have produced results against a depleted KC side. Things looked good in the early going, but then everything fell apart. Jones struggled in the air and with his marking. Fagundez got in good positions, but just couldn’t finish. Agudelo, well, he was fine. Roster rotation is crucial in a busy week, but you have to figure that this game was winnable, especially after the Revs captured the first goal.

2. Jones is better in the midfield. Out of necessity, Jones has played several games as center back for the Revolution this year. These performances have been a mixed bag as solid moments are often followed by puzzling ones. Wednesday night was almost completely puzzling as the Designated Player frequently lost his mark, lost aerial duels and wandered too far forward. Jones isn’t a bad player, not by any stretch, but he’s better suited for the midfield.

3. It’s a game where all the clichés apply. The Revs have to have a "short memory." They must "forget this game." It’s time to get "back to the basics." In short, it’s a disaster game that the team needs to rebound from quickly. In the grand scheme of things, this road game during a busy stretch won’t mean much. After all, points were dropped against a Western Conference team and the Revs still have a chance to claim first place when they welcome D.C. United this weekend. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a bad loss in which points were given away. At the same time, it’s not worth pushing the panic button, though it is worth expediting the search for defensive depth.