On a night that saw over three hours of weather delays, seven yellow cards, a red, 29 fouls, and some technical difficulties at halftime, the Revs held on for the win on a memorable Independence day marathon. Bruce Arena summarized it best in his halftime interview when he said, “Does anyone know what’s going on here?”
Matt Turner made huge save after huge save down the stretch as the New England Revolution held off the Colorado Rapids at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Denver Colorado. Five hours and twenty minutes after the scheduled start time, the battle of the two hottest teams in MLS ended with the Revs winning 2-1, pushing their unbeaten streak to seven games.
The first 27 minutes or so saw the Revs come out playing some of their best soccer of the season. They looked dominant at times as Colorado looked out-classed.
The Revs found the back of the net in the 8th minute via some great holdup play by Juan Agudelo, who drew four defenders towards him before passing to Castillo. Castillo then offered a picturesque pass to Teal Bunbury. Bunbury settled it off of his chest and chipped it in for the go ahead goal, and the 50th of his MLS career.
Play was soon postponed due to weather. The next 20 minutes took about two and a half hours to complete thanks to hail and lightning strikes in the Denver area.
After an abbreviated half time both teams came out and continued to play sloppy soccer until the 52nd minute when Carles Gil sent a free kick into the box that Juan Fernando Caicedo headed past what appeared to be a sleeping Tim Howard to put the Revs up 2-0.
The Rapids answered in the 71st minute, with Diego Rubio heading home a Nicolás Mezquida corner kick. Matt Turner took a questionable yellow card following the goal, after being pile driven into the ground by Tommy Smith. Turner had a huge game, making a handful of saves to hang on as the Rapids put numerous shots on goal in the final half hour.
With this win the Revs are now officially in the playoff conversation. At 23 points they are tied with Toronto, although in 8th place thanks to their slow start and -14 goal differential. They’ll need to continue to climb the table and not leave anything to chance if they hope to make the post season, but Bruce Arena has completely changed the mindset of this team.