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Revs will play a pair of practice games to prepare for the playoffs

Kessler: “Mentally, it’s good preparation”

MLS: Philadelphia Union at New England Revolution Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Revolution will play a pair of practice games at Gillette Stadium to prepare for the playoffs.

The move was made to ensure that the players are game-sharp despite having a 23-day break. These events will be played on the turf and will include referees to help replicate a normal game.

“Mentally, it’s good preparation [to have 11v11 games],” Henry Kessler told The Bent Musket. “When you have referees, you get into that game mindset. Training is slightly different, but when you’re playing a game [and] have the referees and all the other things that come with a game, you can better mentally prepare yourself like it’s a game.”

One of the practice games will be against an outside opponent while the other will be intra-squad with some Revs II players involved. Even intra-squad scrimmages can be beneficial because everyone is jockeying for position.

“Everyone wants to win and everyone wants to show well,” Kessler remarked. “It’s still competitive in terms of the game-day roster, so decisions still have to be made. Obviously you want to play great every time you step on the field, so it’s intense. I’m not sure guys are trying to kill each other—you’re still being smart—but it’s definitely intense. That’s to ensure we’re well-prepared for NYCFC or Atlanta.”