Sène adds pace, finishing ability to Revs’ frontline

French striker expected to stretch defenses

 

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Revolution added some much needed pace to its forward line on Monday morning with the announcement that the club has acquired French striker Saër Sène on a free transfer from German power Bayern Munich. Sène had trained with the Revs during their recent trip to Casa Grande, Ariz., scoring a goal in an abbreviated intra-squad scrimmage.

Attacking reinforcements have been the primary target for the Revs in recent weeks as they look to add some scoring punch ahead of the 2012 season opener against the San Jose Earthquakes in just four weeks. Sène impressed with both his speed and finishing ability while in camp, prompting head coach Jay Heaps to snap up the 25-year-old goal scorer.

“He has a lot of pace in getting behind (defenses),” said Heaps, who noted he wants Sène to use his speed to stretch opponents’ backlines. “He’s left footed. We were able to train with him for a week and he’s a great striker of the ball. Now [the question] is going to be can we spring him? Can we get him in dangerous areas?

“He certainly fit in right away,” Heaps said of Sène’s brief training stint. “(When) you get a guy in (camp), you see how they interact with the team and that was a huge positive. He had days where he was the best finisher we had out there and that showed.”

After beginning his career in the lower divisions in France and Germany, Sène was purchased by Bayern Munich following the 2008-09 season. Although he played primarily with the club’s reserve side – scoring 19 goals and adding three assists in 55 appearances – Sène did make several appearances for the senior squad and was named to Bayern Munich’s roster for preliminary matches in the 2009-10 UEFA Champions League. Most notably, Sène scored Bayern Munich’s third goal in a 4-1 win over AC Milan during the 2009 Audi Cup.

Such experience both playing and training with one of the world’s elite clubs should serve Sène well as he embarks upon a new journey in Major League Soccer, where he hopes to step out of the shadows of Bayern Munich’s reserve side and make a name for himself in the United States.

“Technically, he has it,” said Heaps. “You can see that he’s played at that high level and trained at that high level … He’s now about making himself a career. I think [at Bayern Munich] he was certainly a role player and now I think it’s about coming here and making a mark. That’s what he’s trying to do.”

Sène adds another piece to the Revolution’s attacking puzzle as the club prepares for preseason matches against the LA Galaxy, New York Red Bulls and Real Salt Lake in the FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup (February 22 – March 3), but Heaps and General Manager Michael Burns haven’t yet finished constructing their roster. Depth along the backline remains a focus, while the club continues its quest for more attacking options.

“We want to continue to get more dynamic in the attack,” said Heaps. “I think that’s something that we’re seriously lacking now and we’re gaining piece by piece, but by no means is it done.

“I’ve said it before – it’s probably becoming overboard – but (roster spots) one through 28 we have to get better,” Heaps added. “So we’re constantly looking for incremental change and we’re also looking for that big, drastic change.”