Weekly Update: Dynamo

Revs host Houston Dynamo, look to extend unbeaten streak to three games

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Revolution (6-5-6, 24 pts.) hosts the Houston Dynamo (7-6-5, 26 pts.) on Saturday in the second of three meetings between the two clubs this season. The Dynamo currently sits two points ahead of the Revs, in the fifth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Kickoff for Saturday’s match against the Houston Dynamo is set for 7:30 p.m. Comcast SportsNet will televise the game while 98.5 the Sports Hub will have the game on the radio.

THIS WEEK’S HEADLINES

Charity Drive Series launches Saturday: soccer equipment
On Saturday, the Revs will launch the 2013 Charity Drive series, where the team will collect goods to donate to area charities … this Saturday, the series begins with soccer equipment drive … new or gently-used soccer equipment will be collected at the stadium gates beginning at 6 p.m. … fans who make a donation will receive a player-autographed memento … Saturday’s soccer-equipment donations will benefit Project GOAL, a Rhode Island-based program that facilitates the development of the state’s disadvantaged youth through after-school and soccer-related programs.

One week left to enter Get MatchFit! Like a Pro contest
One week remains to enter the Get MatchFit! Like A Pro contest for your chance at this great, one-of-a-kind opportunity to take your fitness to the next level … win a personal training session with Revolution strength and conditioning coach Nick Downing and a Revolution player in the Revolution weight room … the contest ends at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 14 … the full prize includes a one-hour (1:00) private consultation and training session with Downing and a Revs player in the Revolution weight room at Gillette Stadium, a private tour of the Revolution locker room, and one (1) Revolution jersey signed by a Revolution player … ENTER HERE.

Second of three meetings with Houston
Saturday marks the second of three regular-season meetings between the Revs and Dynamo this season … the Revs won the first meeting, 2-0, at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston on May 18 … Diego Fagundez scored the game-winning goal, while Juan Agudelo made his Revs debut a memorable one by adding a goal of his own late in the second half … a win Saturday against the Dynamo would boost the Revs over Houston into the fifth place in the Eastern Conference standings – the final playoff spot.

Home shutout streak stretches 394 minutes
With a 2-0 win over San Jose on Saturday at Gillette Stadium, the Revs extended their home shutout streak to 394 minutes, spanning the last five games … the Revs last conceded a goal at home in the 55th minute of a 1-1 draw against New York on May 11 … since the draw with New York, the Revs have gone 3-0-1 at home and have outscored opponents, 9-0, in their current run.

Three-game split with the West
The Revs wrapped up a three-game stint against Western Conference opponents with a 2-0 win over the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday … the Revs posted a 1-1-1 record during the swing to push their season record against the West to 2-3-3 … in the two previous games in the three-game Western run, the Revs lost, 4-3, at Vancouver on June 15 and earned a 1-1 draw at Chivas USA on June 29 … the Revs have one remaining match against an Western Conference opponent: at Colorado on July 17.

Sene making his goals count
Saer Sene has scored two goals this season (vs. LA on June 2 and vs. San Jose on July 6), both of which have been game-winners … Sene opened the scoring in a 5-0 victory over LA Galaxy on June 2 … the left-footed midfielder also beat San Jose goalkeeper John Busch in the 13th minute on Saturday in the Revs’ 2-0 win … Sene’s goal against LA was his first since suffering a season-ending knee injury last August … in 12 appearances this year – including five starts – Sene has two goals and two assists.

Stifling defense loves the summer heat
The Revolution maintained their league-leading defense this past weekend, posting their MLS-best 10th shutout of the year in a 2-0 win over San Jose … the Revs’ stifling defense has allowed a league-low 14 goals in 17 games, has an MLS-best 0.82 goals against average and a league-best 77.8 save percentage.

Goncalves getting the love
As media pundits have provided their mid-season marks this week, one defender has stood out to many: Jose Goncalves … Goncalves, in his first season with the Revs and already donning the captain’s armband, has been recognized as both ESPNFC.com and Soccer by Ives’s midseason defender of the year … by backing the Revs’ league-leading defense and providing a veteran presence to the Revs’ relatively young back line, Goncalves has drawn notice for the affect he’s had on New England’s defense.

Shutouts stacking up for Shuttleworth
Bobby Shuttleworth recorded his eighth shutout of the season – and the 12th of his career – against San Jose on Saturday … Shuttleworth is now tied for first in MLS with Portland’s Donovan Ricketts for most shutouts in MLS … Shuttleworth has recorded his eight shutouts in 15 games while Ricketts has been in goal for 17 … in other goalkeeping categories, Shuttleworth is tied for first in goals allowed (14), third in goals against (0.93) and second in save percentage (76.2%).

Barrett back in starting lineup
On Saturday night against San Jose, Chad Barrett earned his first start since the Revs’ home opener on March 23 against Sporting Kansas City … Barrett has scored two goals and added one assist this season in seven appearances totaling just 178 minutes … in his last appearance before Saturday, the forward came on as a late second-half substitute against Chivas USA on June 29 and scored the equalizer in the 88th minute.

Rowe racking up assists
Kelyn Rowe recorded his sixth assist of the season on Saturday in the Revs’ 2-0 win … the second-year midfielder nutmegged Earthquakes defender Dan Gargan and placed a ball directly on to the foot of a streaking Lee Nguyen, who then found Dimitry Imbongo in front of goal, where he beat Jon Busch … Rowe’s sixth assist established a new single-season best after he recorded five assists as a rookie … Rowe’s sixth assists are the third most in MLS and he enters the week tied for fourth in assists in the league.

Halfway home
Saturday’s 2-0 win over San Jose marked the midway point in the 2013 season for the Revolution … the Revs have played 17 games and compiled a 6-5-6 record overall for 24 points and a sixth-place standing in the Eastern Conference …
2013 2012
Games 17 17
Record 6-5-6 6-7-4
Points 24 22
Goals For 21 24
Goals Scored per Game 1.24 1.41
Goals Against 14 22
Goals Against Average 0.82 1.28
Home Record 4-2-3 5-1-3
Road Record 2-3-3 1-6-1

What we do from here matters
While the Revs are in a slightly similar place record, points and standing wise as the 2012 team, the 2013 season will hopefully take a different turn after the half-way mark this year … in 2012, the Revs went a club-record 10 games winless (0-7-3) immediately after the halfway mark to drop from sixth place in the East standings to ninth place, gaining only three points between July 14 and Sept. 1 … this season, with a league-leading defense, the Revs hope to avoid the summer struggles of the 2012 squad.

Play, Eat, Score! With Revs, Paps Gino’s
All season, the Revolution and Papa Gino's will be giving away a prize package to New England soccer teams … the prize packages include: an appearance by a Revolution player at the team’s soccer practice, 50 Revolution Tickets, 20 Drawstring Bags, 20 Water Bottles, 10 large Papa Gino’s pizzas and 20 Papa Gino’s small cheese pizza coupons … for a chance to win, simply explain WHY your team should have a Revolution player deliver the prize package to a practice … eight (8) winners will be selected throughout the season to win … enter HERE.

Sovereign | Santander’s “Goals for Charity” program in full swing
Sovereign | Santander, the official bank of the New England Revolution, has launched the “Goals for Charity” campaign to coincide with the CONCACAF Gold Cup 2013 and the second half o the Revs’ season … in the program, Sovereign | Santander will contribute $500 for every goal scored during the Gold Cup 2013 and Revolution games between now and October 17 (a total up to $50,000) to three Boston non-profit organizations: The Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston, Cradles to Crayons and Camp Harborview … the Revs’ goal donation total to date is $1,000 (two goals).

THIS WEEK’S OPPONENT INFO
Revolution vs. Houston Dynamo (regular-season): 7-3-5
Home: 2-1-4
Away: 5-2-1

TEAM NOTES AGAINST HOUSTON

  • New England and Houston have met 15 times in the overall MLS regular-season series, with the Revs holding a 7-3-5 record against the Dynamo … the Revolution is 7-3-7 against the Dynamo in all competitions, including MLS Cup and SuperLiga
  • Saturday’s meeting will be the second of three meetings between the two clubs this season … the two clubs play at Gillette Stadium on Sept. 28 to complete out the regular-season series
  • The Revs won the first meeting between the two clubs this season, a 2-0 win on May 18 at BBVA Compass Stadium
  • The Revs began the all-time series with a 6-1-3 record against Houston through the 2010 season, but Houston then went 2-0-2 against New England with two wins at home and two draws at Gillette Stadium in 2011 and 2012
  • In all but one meeting – the 2-1 Revs win in Houston on Oct. 10, 2010 - the winning team has recorded a shutout or the match has ended in a draw … overall, there have been nine shutouts in 15 regular-season meetings
  • New England and Houston have met in three tournament finals: MLS Cup 2006, MLS Cup 2007, SuperLiga 2008 … Houston won the 2006 MLS title match in penalty kicks after extra time finished 1-1 in Frisco, Texas, and then one year later took the 2007 championship with a come-from-behind, 2-1 victory in Washington, D.C. … the Revs won SuperLiga 2008 in penalty kicks after the teams were knotted at 2-2 after extra time at Gillette Stadium
     

PLAYER NOTES AGAINST HOUSTON

  • Saer Sene is the Revolution’s current leading scorer against Houston with two goals in one appearance … Sene scored a penalty kick goal and later an unassisted strike when the teams met on May 19, 2012, at Gillette Stadium
  • Diego Fagundez scored his first goal against the Dynamo – the game-winner – in the Revs’ 2-0 win on May 18
  • Juan Agudelo made his first appearance as a member of the Revolution – and scored his first goal as a Rev – against Houston (May 18)
  • Chad Barrett has recorded two assists in 11 games against Houston
  • Andy Dorman and Clyde Simms have each recorded one assist the Houston Dynamo
  • Kevin Alston recorded the first assist of his career against the Dynamo, picking up the second assist on Kheli Dube’s game-winning goal at Houston on Aug. 25, 2009
  • Bobby Shuttleworth is 2-1-0 against Houston, with all three appearances coming on the road … he made six saves in a win on Oct. 10, 2010, at Robertson Stadium; drew the loss in the team’s the 2-0 loss on Sept. 29, 2012, at BBVA Compass Stadium; and recorded a shutout win on May 18 in a 2-0 win
  • Matt Reis is 5-2-5 in his regular-season career against the Dynamo with an 0.92 goals against average and five shutouts
  • Former Rev Steve Ralston is Houston’s assistant coach, and still holds a share of the New England career scoring lead against the Dynamo with three goals and one assist in seven regular-season appearances
     

THIS WEEK IN ROCHESTER

  • The Rhinos went 0-1-1 last week with a 3-1 loss at Dayton Dutch Lions (July 4) before earning a 2-2 draw against the Charlotte Eagles at home (July 6)
  • On the season, Rochester is 3-8-7 and is 11th in the 13-team USL PRO division
  • The Revs currently have four players on loan to the Rochester Rhinos as part of the teams’ affiliation agreement: defender Bilal Duckett, midfielder Gabe Latigue, forward Matt Horth and defender Tyler Polak.
  • Duckett leads all Revs players with one goal and 1011 minutes played in 14 games … Latigue has played 854 minutes in 13 games … Polak has made 13 appearances and has played 804 minutes … Horth is the only other player to record a goal and has played 489 minutes in 10 games.
     

REVOLUTION ACADEMY UPDATE

U18s preparing for Finals Week
After a dramatic finish to the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Playoffs, the Revolution Under-18 team will make its first-ever trip to Finals Week to vie for the U18 national championship … eight of the 80 teams from the elite youth league remain and will battle for the title in Houston, July 14-20 … held at Houston Amateur Sports Park, Finals Week includes three group matches and a placement game for each team … group matches will be played on July 14, 16 and 18, and placement games will then be played on July 20, with the title game taking place at BBVA Compass Stadium – home of the Houston Dynamo … the U18s will play group games against Shattuck-Saint Mary’s (Minn.), De Anza Force (Calif.) and St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri (Mo.).

Revolution U18s make New England history
By qualifying for Finals Week, the Revolution Under-18s became the first team from New England to qualify for the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Finals Week since 2009 and only the second team from New England overall … teams from Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Connecticut compete in the prestigious Development Academy, but the Revs’ squad is the second New England-based team to advance to the finals … in 2009, the then FC Greater Boston advanced to the finals in the Under-17/18 bracket.

U18s Playoff summary
The Under-18 team claimed its first-ever spot in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Finals Week, finishing at the top its playoff group with a 1-0-2 (5 pts.) record … during the Playoffs, the U18s opened with a pair of draws: 1-1 against the Dallas Texans (June 24) and 1-1 against the San Jose Earthquakes (June 25), before topping the LA Galaxy, 4-2, in their third game (June 27).

U18 Season Summary
The Under-18 team closed out the season with a 15-5-5 (40 pts.) overall record and 2.00 points per game average … finishing third in the Northeast Division of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy’s East Conference, the team qualified for its third Development Academy Playoffs in four seasons (2010, 2012, 2013) … the U18s really hit their stride in December, putting together a 12-game unbeaten streak through early April.