The New England Revolution’s start to the season can be summarized with one stat: three games, no goals. Suffice it to say, 2015 has been frustrating for the Revs, who are just a few months removed from playing in the MLS Cup Final. Still, the squad remains positive with a firm belief that the floodgates will open soon.
"The first one’s always the hardest," Diego Fagundez explained. "But after that I think we can definitely score many. We have talented players and of course overall, around the whole defense, goalie, and our players all over, we have a talented team that we can definitely score more goals."
Part of the issue lies in the lack of accurate shots. The Revs have amassed 28 total shots. The only team to have played three games and have less is the Houston Dynamo, who have only managed 21 takes under their new coach. The story worsens when you look at shots on target as the Revs have only mustered six.
That said, there have been close calls. Kelyn Rowe was denied a goal in Seattle by the fingertips of Stefan Frei. One week later, Juan Agudelo successfully fought off two defenders, only to put his header directly at Josh Saunders. The team’s most recent fixture against the Montreal Impact brought the same story as players like Lee Nguyen, Andrew Farrell, and Fagundez had good looks but no goals.
Misfiring is a reality for the Revs right now, but it’s not overly concerning to head coach Jay Heaps.
"Things aren’t clicking the right way," Heaps commented. "But I’m not worried yet because I think we’re having chances. I felt like the last two games we were dangerous. We’re missing by inches not by feet. We weren’t dangerous at all in Seattle but the last two games we’ve been dangerous."
It’s an odd piece of trivia, but the Revs didn’t score last season until their fourth game. Similar to this year, the Revolution had a large loss then a close one, followed by a scoreless draw. The next game was a 2-1 victory over the San Jose Earthquakes, which included an own goal and a late Lee Nguyen game winner. Ironically, the Earthquakes are set to visit Gillette Stadium next weekend.
While there is certainly dissatisfaction lingering in the Revolution locker room, the team does take some solace in the fact that last year’s slow start didn’t prevent them from making it to the MLS Cup Final. The team recognizes that it’s a long season and they’re hopeful that the goals will soon come.
"It’s progress from the last two games," Farrell said of Saturday’s game. "The finishing wasn’t there but it’s the same as last year: we lost the first two, didn’t score until after an own goal, we scored at San Jose in the fourth game and made it to MLS Cup so we have the players and it just takes a while sometimes.
"So we’re staying positive and taking the positive from each game and moving forward."