clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Know Thy Enemy: Revolution vs. Orlando and the Week of Goodbyes

Revolution stars Adam Buksa and Matt Turner get their send offs this week before as they head off to Europe.

SOCCER: NOV 29 MLS Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference Semifinal - New England Revolution at Orlando City SC Photo by Andrew Bershaw/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The New England Revolution are in the middle of a busy stretch, with three games in eight days and already coming off a win last Sunday at Sporting Kansas City.

But their next two games are going to be different, as they will be the last appearances for Adam Buksa and Matt Turner with the team. Buksa was not going to be featuring after his transfer with FC Lens in France anyway but it seems he has picked up a foot injury with Poland during the international window and will miss several weeks. Matt Turner is returning from international duty and will make his last start this Sunday against Minnesota United.

This day has been coming for Revs fans, it had long been assumed that Turner and Buksa would move abroad either this summer or at the end of the year, but having the ability to do two send off games in a week is pretty neat.

How Bruce Arena and the Revolution adjust on the field tactically and with new player acquisitions could be just as defining for the era as transferring out $20 million in player transactions for a team that really only had Clint Dempsey as a major player sale in team history and that seems forever ago.

But tonight, the Revs have a chance to get not only back above the playoff line, but a chance to get above tonight’s opponent Orlando City. Here to chat with us as always is our good friend Ben Miller of The Mane Land for all things about the Lions who continue to be a very talented yet frustratingly inconsistent team with a side of major self inflicted losses that have them currently in the playoffs but with a losing home record and a negative goal differential.

Can the Revs continue their six-match unbeaten streak or will Orlando find a way to break through a team they have struggled against in league play over the years. As always, be sure to check out my answers to Ben’s questions over on their site.

TBM: Orlando has a very inconsistent and all over the place form chart so far in 2022, including a 3W-4L-0D record at home that has the Lions currently in 5th place in the East. What’s the overall feeling on Orlando’s play so far this year and how do they improve to get more consistent results?

BM: The feeling is that there needs to be more consistency. Form and results have varied wildly this season and while some of the defensive leakiness can be attributed to the long term injury that Antonio Carlos is dealing with, that doesn’t explain some of the beyond anemic offensive performances. That being said, the team has shown enough for me to believe that it can be in the playoffs once the dust clears on Decision Day. For that to happen mistakes need to be minimized. This team shot itself in the foot multiple times in a 4-2 loss to LAFC and a 3-1 loss to FC Dallas. Both games came at home and both results came from Orlando simply making too many mistakes which were capitalized on by their opponents. If sloppy moments and mental lapses can be cleaned up it should go a long way towards more consistent form.

TBM: Pedro Gallese is a stud and has six wins this year, all via shutout, for Orlando but he’s with Peru on World Cup Qualifying duty so who is stepping in to guard the sticks in Foxboro?

BM: A few days ago I’d have said that task would fall to Mason Stajduhar. But the Homegrown goalkeeper just had surgery to repair a fractured jaw that he picked up in training so it should be Adam Grinwis in goal. Either Pedro Gallese will be on the bench or you might see youngster Javier Otero get called up from Orlando City B to back up Grinwis.

TBM: New DP striker Ercan Kara leads the team with four goals so far this year and I get a big Adam Buksa target striker vibe from him, what has he and the team done to allow him to have early success in MLS?

BM: An injury in preseason meant that Kara got off to a bit of a slow start in 2022. But he had three goals in his last four league games before the international break and I think a large part of that was just having more time to build chemistry with his teammates. He’s definitely capable of knocking in goals but he’s needed time to gel with Mauricio Pereyra, new signing Facundo Torres and Alexandre Pato, who is essentially also a new signing after an injury kept him largely sidelined during the 2021 season.

Lineup/Injuries/Predictions/Etc

Stajduhar is out as mentioned, Antonio Carlos is still recovering from a hamstring tear, and I believe Silvester van der Water is still sidelined as well.

Adam Grinwis; Joao Moutinho, Rodrigo Schlegel, Robin Jansson, Ruan; Junior Urso, Cesar Araujo, Mauricio Pereyra; Facundo Torres, Alexandre Pato, Ercan Kara

Prediction: Orlando looks like a team that hasn’t played a game in 18 days and falls 2-1 on the road.