The end of season is shaping up to be a fun one as the Eastern Conference couldn’t be much closer. The Revs are currently holding on to the sixth spot with 35 points, but they are closely trailed by Montreal, Orlando, and Toronto (34 points), as well as Chicago (33 points).
Will the Revs grab a playoff spot? Let’s see what our staff says:
I’ll start by saying that I think the top five teams in the East will remain above the line. I also expect Toronto to make the post-season. This leaves two open spots.
Montreal is is in a tailspin and I don’t think they’ll recover. Orlando has a chance but their inconsistencies will keep them out.
That leaves the Revolution and Fire.
The Fire, who haven’t been good for much of 2019, are a wildcard because they’ve gotten some positive results in recent weeks. Their remaining schedule includes New England (away), Toronto (home), and Orlando (away). These games have massive implications for the final standings.
That said, I trust Bruce Arena’s ability to get results so I have the Revs taking the 7th spot.
The Revolution currently control their own destiny as they’re sitting in the sixth playoff spot with a game in-hand and a point advantage over Montreal and Orlando, who are in seventh and eighth place, respectively. In ninth place, Toronto also has a game in-hand over these clubs, but like them, they’re sitting a point behind the Revolution.
The Revolution have tied their two games since the 2-0 loss to LAFC, but these were challenging games on the road where only picking up one point in each isn’t the end of the world. Four of their remaining eight games are at home, including important games against Toronto and Chicago. The Revolution should pick up six points from these two matches, which should see them head into their remaining fixtures back on top-form.
Given Toronto’s easy schedule to end the season, I see them making the playoffs with the Revolution. Keeping a hold of the sixth spot will likely require the club to pick up a couple wins on the road. Regardless, there’s no reason to believe the Revolution’s good form won’t continue so the team should be making the playoffs for the first year since the 2015 season.
The Revs have a total of 8 games left of the season, which means there are a crucial 24 points up for grabs. Looking at the schedule, I believe without a doubt they’ll take 3 points against Chicago, Orlando, and Real Salt Lake. I’m also optimistic the Revs will at least take a point from NYCFC during their two meetings and a point from Toronto. However, the Decision Day game against reigning champs Atlanta is scaring me. With all this said, I think the Revs won’t take less than 13 points through the remainder of the season. This means the Revs should end the season with 48 points.
Looking ahead though, I am somewhat concerned with the fact that the Revs will play half of their remaining games on the road. Although the Revs have had recent success, the road has not always treated this team well in the past. This is especially daunting because they’ll be traveling to NYCFC, Orlando, Portland, and Atlanta, all of which have pretty good home support.
At the end of the day only time will tell if this dream will come to fruition. All I can say is, no matter what happens, I am incredibly proud of how far these players, this team, and this organization have come over the past season.
I do however want to point out something I have said previously regarding simply making the playoffs. Being the 6th or 7th best team in the Eastern Conference and losing one additional road game does not mean you are good at soccer or had a successful season. I will continue to say this despite the tremendous and unexpected turnaround the Revs have had to start the Bruce Arena era in 2019.
At the start of the year I think realistic expectations for New England to be one of the last teams in the playoffs were fair, but that was the high water mark of those proverbial predictions at the start of the year. The Revs might have taken a very odd route to get to where they are in the standings now, but it was reasonable to say they had the talent to be a playoff team, albeit a low seeded one, back in March.
Whatever Bruce Arena and this team accomplishes in 2019, as far as I’m concerned it’s just a build up for the 2020 season. That doesn’t mean I won’t be happy to see the Revs in the playoffs or think it’s impossible for the Revs to win a game or two in November...I just view this season differently with everything that’s gone on. My expectations will significantly change next year, when I would hope the Revs are competing not just for a playoff spot, but for a Top 4 seed and a guaranteed home game. This year, let’s just enjoy the ride and if a playoff run happens, that’s just gravy to add onto the already happy memories of this year that have replaced the depressing thoughts that ended to the Friedel era.