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Revolution v. Rapids: Three Thoughts

Matt Turner should be the starter and two more thoughts.

MLS: New England Revolution at Colorado Rapids Russell Lansford-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Revolution kept a good thing going on Thursday when they defeated the Colorado Rapids 2-1. Here are three thoughts from the game.

  1. Matt Turner should be the Revs’ starter. After a turbulent start to the season that saw all three goalkeepers get minutes, interim head coach Mike Lapper named Turner as his top guy. Unfortunately for Turner, he earned a two-game suspension just as Bruce Arena was talking the reigns. Brad Knighton made the most of the opportunity, which prevented Arena from naming a full-time starter. Turner’s remarkable stop in the 89th minute of Thursday’s game is proof that he should be the starter going forward. Turner’s ability to make a game-changing save is why some believe he’ll be on the national team at some point. While Turner’s inexperience will surely lead to mistakes, his potential is too high for him to be on the bench.
  2. I can’t believe the Revs are in contention for a playoff spot. With a record of 2-8-2, the Revolution were in dire straits when Brad Friedel was fired in May. I was optimistic when Arena was hired but figured it would take time for him to work his magic. Apparently not, as the team’s goal differential is the only thing keeping them below the red line. Honestly, I shouldn’t be that surprised since seven teams in each conference make the playoffs. Plus, MLS is an unpredictable league. At this point, grasping the sixth or seventh seed isn’t out of the question for the Revs and I wouldn’t want to face them if it happens.
  3. The Revs are playing some pretty good soccer. Sometimes results don’t accurately reflect the play that’s happening on the field but for the Revs it does. Arena has this team playing fun, yet pragmatic, soccer. The players know the runs to make but also understand the importance of their defensive block. They look more patient in their buildup, which has led to some beautiful moments. Take Thursday’s first goal as an example. Juan Agudelo gets on the ball and looks towards goal. Recognizing that it’d be a miracle to penetrate the Colorado defense, he dribbles to the left, pulling along his opposition. He then plays Edgar Castillo, who offers a picturesque cross to Teal Bunbury. Bunbury’s first touch is spot on, as he pushes the ball towards goal before kicking it into the back of the net. That’s the type of soccer you want to see.