The New England Revolution will be looking to make it two in a row at home on Saturday night when they welcome an old rival to Gillette Stadium in the Houston Dynamo. The Revs surprised everybody last weekend when they came out like gangbusters and pummeled Vancouver 4-1 on the strength of a once-in-a-season display of dominance by Lee Nguyen. Houston, meanwhile, is playing their third match in a week after winning 1-0 in their brand new stadium last weekend and drawing Portland 0-0 on Tuesday.
Another offensive explosion could be exactly what the doctor ordered against a tough but struggling Dynamo side. The Revs need to try and ride the wave of confidence that is undoubtedly surging from the likes of Nguyen and Saer Sene and translate that into goals. The defensive lapses are still there, but they appear to be getting better as the season goes on.
Unfortunately, Houston excels most on set-pieces; they are a squad full of enormous men unafraid to throw their weight around in the box. New England has shown difficulty both defending and capitalizing on set-pieces this season, which could present issues in Foxboro. The Revs need to stay smart when defending corners and free kicks, or it will be a long evening.
Clyde Simms will be unavailable for this match with left ankle tendonitis. Apart from that, the usual suspects of Florian Lechner, Sainey Nyassi, Jeremiah White, and Zak Boggs are out, too.
New England has the series advantage with a 6-2-4 record. Last season, Houston took the series, winning the first encounter and drawing the second 1-1 in a match which saw Matt Reis receive a post-match red card for a tussle with Adam Moffat.
The match will be televised live on CSN at 7:30 PM EST. 98.5 The Sports Hub will handle the radio coverage at the same time.