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Revs 2, Quakes 2: Wide-open affair in San Jose ends in draw

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New England extends unbeaten streak to five

MLS: New England Revolution at San Jose Earthquakes Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

San Jose leading scorer Danny Hoesen nodded home the equalizer just after halftime as New England and San Jose battled to a 2-2 stalemate at Avaya Stadium on Wednesday night.

In a match that saw a total of 35 shots, there was no shortage of chances for either side in a game that went end-to-end for 90 minutes. Hoesen opened the scoring in the 17th minute following a turnover in the Revolution half. Following a long throw from goalkeeper Matt Turner, San Jose defensive midfielder Florian Jungwirth knocked the ball away from Kelyn Rowe into the path of Hoesen. The Dutch striker dribbled through a stretched New England backline and fired a left-footed shot past Turner for a 1-0 Quake lead.

The lead was short-lived, however, as New England was awarded a free kick in the 31st minute about 20 yards away from goal following a foul on Krisztian Nemeth. Diego Fagundez, wearing the captain’s armband, lofted an inch-perfect ball to the left of San Jose netminder Andrew Tarbell into the back netting, drawing the Revs level 1-1.

New England would head into the break with the lead following a lightning-quick transition goal just before halftime. In the 43rd minute, Turner snatched a corner kick out of the air and fired a hard ground ball to Nemeth, who deftly tapped it toward Fagundez racing toward the midfield stripe. The Uruguayan sent a long ball to a streaking Cristian Penilla deep on the left flank, who dribbled and cut back to the middle before blasting it past Tarbell into the side net for a 2-1 Revolution lead at the half. Remarkably, the entire sequence took only 12 seconds.

Both clubs were essentially even in the stat line at the break, with San Jose holding a slight 53%-47% possession edge. Each side took 10 shots in the opening 45 minutes. San Jose spent the majority of the half trying to play balls into the acres of space behind the New England high line to their two forwards, Hoesen and Chris Wondolowski. Thanks to solid defending from Jalil Anibaba and goalkeeping from Turner, they weren‘t able to break through in the run of play.

However, in the 51st minute, Quake right back Nick Lima advanced the ball deep down the right side, launching a perfect cross into the box that found the head of Hoesen between two Revolution defenders. The former Ajax man placed the ball just past Turner into the net for his second score on the night and his team-leading ninth goal on the year.

Numerous chances on both sides in the final 40 minutes never bore fruit, and the match ended with both sides getting a deserved point. New England ended the night either even or slightly ahead of San Jose in most statistical categories, but they could never find the winning goal. As we‘ve seen all year, the Revs‘ attack was most effective when creating turnovers from their high-press or in transition on the counterattack. They offered little creativity otherwise.

Brad Friedel formed up his squad in a 4-4-2, using a lineup not that dissimilar from the Revs‘ past couple of matches. As expected, Gabriel Somi returned to his former left back slot in place of the suspended Claude Dielna. Kelyn Rowe, the subject of transfer rumors, started in the defensive midfield alongside Luis Caicedo. Rowe was replaced by Wilfried Zahibo in the second half. Nemeth made his third start of the season, in right midfield, before being subbed out for Juan Agudelo. Cristian Penilla was again on the left side. Fagundez started up top with the team’s leading goalscorer, Teal Bunbury, but he essentially filled an attacking midfield role throughout the match. Turner ended the night with three saves.

Match Facts

New England is now unbeaten in six straight vs San Jose. The Quakes still lead the season series 20-14-8 (10-6-5 in San Jose).

The Revolution move to 1-2-4 on the road. They are now 1-4-4 in matches in which they've conceded the first goal. New England moves to 3-1-2 against Western Conference clubs on the year. Penilla‘s goal in the 43rd minute was the Revs‘ sixth on the year scored just before halftime.

New England remains in fifth place in the Eastern Conference, six points clear of the red line.

The Revs are now on a 17-day international break for the World Cup group stage matches. Their next league game is on June 30th at 7:30 against DC United at Gillette Stadium.