The New England Revolution lost 2-1 on Saturday night and the game-winning goal for the New York Red Bulls was courtesy of a Lewis Morgan penalty kick but Matt Polster isn’t sure that it should have been given.
Morgan went down in the box in the 75th minute in what appeared to be a harmless play. Morgan wasn’t happy and they play eventually went to VAR. It appeared on the replay that Tommy McNamara tugged Morgan’s jersey and a penalty kick was eventually awarded.
Asked about the Revs giving up 10 penalty kicks, Polster started his response by talking about the call that was made on Saturday evening.
“I have to look at this penalty [again],” Polster said. “From my view, it looked like only [Lewis] Morgan was complaining about the penalty. I asked some of the Red Bull players and they weren’t even aware that there was a penalty shout. So for this one, I’m not sure. It is what it is. That’s the referee’s decision.”
Polster eventually went on to touch upon New England’s struggles allowing penalty kicks this season.
“The other ones, obviously, we just need to be cleaner and make better mental plays,” he said. “We made a lot of mental mistakes tonight, me included. It’s just mental lapses at times that we haven’t seem to overcome this year.”
Bruce Arena also commented on the call after the match.
“I didn’t see it,” he said. “I was told that [Tommy McNamara] tugged on the shirt of the player. I didn’t see the play.”
As Polster mentioned, mistakes have proven costly for New England this season. After Saturday’s loss, New England has dropped 29 points in games that they held the lead. Even if you just cut that number in half, the Revs playoff chances would dramatically increase.
The Revolution don’t have time to sit back and what could have been regarding the decision to award a penalty kick as New England returns to action on Tuesday when they face the Houston Dynamo.
Polster told WPRO’s Tommy Quinlan that the Red Bulls game is already in the past and the focus is now on Houston.
“I think it’s better that we have a game coming up,” Polster said. “You can’t really dwell on this game too much. It’s good in that manner. Obviously, it’ll be a little difficult with the travel and the legs. We’ll just recover as quickly as possible. I think it’s better that we have a quick turnaround. Our focus already shifted to Houston.”