Weekly Update: Dynamo

Playoff positioning at stake as Revs host Dynamo in third and final regular-season meeting

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Revolution (11-11-7, 40 pts.) hosts the Houston Dynamo (12-10-7, 43 pts.) on Saturday, Sept. 28, in the second of crucial back-to-back home games at Gillette Stadium.

Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m., with Comcast SportsNet broadcasting the game live on TV, and 98.5 The Sports Hub carrying the game on the radio.

The Dynamo enters Week 31 of MLS regular-season play holding down fourth place in the Eastern Conference playoff race while the Revs are right behind them the fifth and final position. A Revolution win on Saturday would leapfrog the Revs into fourth place – ahead of Houston – by virtue of tie-breakers.

This will be the third and final meeting between the two clubs this season. Both teams have earned road victories through the first two games with the Revs earning a 2-0 win at BBVA Compass Stadium on May 18 followed by a Houston 2-1 win at Gillette Stadium on July 13. This is the first season since Houston joined MLS in 2006 that the two teams will play three regular-season games.

College Night at Gillette Stadium Saturday
College Night is back at Gillette Stadium when the Revs host the Houston Dynamo on Saturday night … tickets for students are just $15, which includes admission to a pregame tailgate party, a corn hole tournament, free food and beverages and other activities … students are encouraged to wear school t-shirts as the Rev Girls will select students to represent various universities for the halftime activities … free bus transportation to the stadium is available from CitySide Bar at Cleveland Circle (1960 Beacon St. Boston Mass.) and Stadium Sports Bar at Faneuil Hall (148 State St. Boston, Mass.) … more information is available HERE.

Saturday is Breast Cancer Awareness match
The New England Revolution will celebrate breast cancer survivors and raise and help further breast cancer awareness when the team presents its annual Breast Cancer Awareness game Saturday … the game will include several pink accents throughout the night, including:

  • Playing with a pink adidas game ball
  • Pink corner flags and goal netting
  • Players wearing pink ribbon patches on their jerseys
  • Players wearing pink armbands
  • Selected players wearing pink shoelaces and/or pink cleats
  • Coaches and broadcasters wearing pink scarves
     

Another shuffle in the standings
Following Saturday’s 2-1 win over D.C. United, the Revs are back in a playoff position in the Eastern Conference playoff race … with a 11-11-7 record for 40 points, the Revs sit in the fifth and final playoff spot … Saturday’s opponent – Houston (12-10-7, 43 pts.) – sits just three points ahead of the Revs in fourth place … both Chicago (11-12-6, 39 pts.) and Philadelphia (10-10-9, 39 pts.) sit one point behind the Revs and are tied for sixth place, while Columbus (11-14-5, 38 pts.) is just two points behind and in eighth place.

Eastern Conference Standings
1. New York Red Bulls – 15-9-6, 51 pts.
2. Sporting Kansas City – 14-9-6, 48 pts.
3. Montreal Impact – 13-9-6, 45 pts.
4. Houston Dynamo – 12-10-7, 43 pts.
5. New England Revolution 11-11-7, 40 pts.
6. Chicago Fire – 11-12-6, 39 pts.
7. Philadelphia Union – 10-10-9, 39 pts.

Tough season-ending stretch starts this weekend
The Revs host the Houston Dynamo on Saturday night, beginning their final five games of the regular season, all against teams either in, or in reach of, playoff positioning … in fact, the Revs’ next three games are against the East’s fourth (vs. Houston, Sept. 28), first (at New York, Oct. 5) and third (at Montreal, Oct. 12) place teams … the Revolution’s final two matches are a home-and-away series with Columbus, who currently sits just two points out of a playoff spot.

Houston swing-game is on deck
Saturday’s meeting between New England and Houston is the third and final meeting between the teams … the two teams split the first two games of the regular-season series with each team earning a road win … the Revs posted a 2-0 victory on May 18 in Houston, before falling 2-1 at Gillette Stadium on July 13 … the last time the Revolution won twice in a season against the Dynamo was 2010, when the Revs swept the two-game season series, 1-0 at Gillette Stadium and 2-1 at Robertson Stadium … this is the first time ever the teams meet three times in one year.

Not laying out the welcome mat
The Revs host the Houston Dynamo on Saturday night in the second of two crucial back-to-back home games at Gillette Stadium … the Revs have not made it easy for visiting opponents in the past month, as the team has claimed nine of 12 possible points at home since mid-August … in their last four home games, the Revs have scored 11 goals and conceded just six while going 3-1-0 … following Saturday’s match against Houston, the Revs play at Gillette Stadium just once more in the regular season: Oct. 19 when they host Columbus.

Defense back on track
Entering last Saturday’s game against D.C. United, the Revs had allowed seven goals in their previous two games … however, one of the league’s top defensive units returned to its stingy ways against United, allowing just one goal in the win – and an own goal at that … entering Week 31 of MLS action, the Revs are ranked fifth in goals against average (1.14), fifth in goals allowed (33) and first in shutouts (12).

You must be this young to score a goal
Diego Fagundez – one of Major League Soccer’s top young talents – scored his team-leading 11th goal of the season on Saturday night against D.C. United, and continued the team’s streak of young players scoring goals … 10 of the team’s last 12 goals have been scored by players 21 years old or younger … those goals have come from Kelyn Rowe (5), Fagundez (4) and Juan Agudelo (3).

Fagundez stays red hot
Diego Fagundez scored his team-leading 11th goal of the season against D.C. United on Saturday night … the 18-year-old has now scored four goals and added two assists in the last five games … Fagundez became the youngest player in MLS history to score at least 10 goals in a season on Sept. 8 against Montreal … on the year, the 18-year-old midfielder has 11 goals and six assists in 26 appearances.

Sene dishing out assists
Saer Sene recorded his fifth assist of the season on Saturday night as he set up Diego Fagundez for his 11th goal of the season … Sene has recorded one assist in each of the last three games … the midfielder recorded just three assists in 2012, while scoring 11 goals to lead the team in scoring.

Reis remains unbeaten in 2013
Matt Reis earned his fourth win of the season against D.C. United on Saturday night and remained unbeaten on the year … the 38-year-old goalkeeper has posted a 4-0-2 record with a 0.50 goals against average and three shutouts … Reis’ last loss came on September 15, 2012, a 2-1 defeat at D.C. United.

Tierney moving up the charts
Chris Tierney moved into ninth place on the Revs’ career starts chart on Saturday night … the Wellesley, Mass., product now has 116 games started, passing Cranston, R.I.’s Michael Parkhurst (115) … Tierney also moved into ninth place in minutes played (10,189), passing Kevin Alston (10,152) … Tierney, now in his sixth MLS season, also moved into third place on the club’s corner kicks charts with 211, passing Joe-Max Moore (209) … Tierney already ranks eighth in career appearances (127), eighth in assists (21) and third in game-winning assists (10).

Play, Eat, Score! With Revs, Papa 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 of the Revolution season … in the program, Sovereign | Santander will contribute $500 for every goal scored during the Gold Cup 2013 and Revolution games between July 6 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.

THIS WEEK’S OPPONENT INFO

Revolution vs. Houston Dynamo (regular season): 7-4-5
Home: 2-2-4
Away: 5-2-1

Team Notes against Houston

  • New England and Houston have met 16 times in the overall MLS regular-season series, with the Revs holding a 7-4-5 record against the Dynamo … the Revolution is 7-4-7 against the Dynamo in all competitions, including MLS Cup and SuperLiga
  • Saturday’s meeting will be the third and final meeting between the two clubs this season … the Revs earned a 2-0 road-win at BBVA Compass Stadium on May 18 before falling 2-1 at Gillette Stadium on July 13
  • 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 two meetings – the 2-1 Revs win in Houston on Oct. 10, 2010 and Houston’s 2-1 win in New England on July 13, 2013 – the winning team has recorded a shut out or the match has ended in a draw … overall, there have been nine shutouts in 16 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 three goals in two appearances … Sene scored a penalty kick goal and later added an unassisted strike when the teams met on May 19, 2012, at Gillette Stadium … the midfielder scored again in the team’s 2-1 loss at Gillette on July 13
  • Juan Agudelo and Diego Fagundez are the team’s only other active scorers against Houston … both players scored against the Dynamo in the team’s 2-0 win on May 18 in Houston … Agudelo’s goal came in his first-ever appearance as a member of the Revolution
  • Three players – Kevin Alston, Andy Dorman and Clyde Simms – have recorded assists against the Dynamo … 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 … Simms recorded his first assist in New England in the team’s 2-0 win earlier this year.
  • Chad Barrett has recorded two assists in 11 games against Houston … both assists came when he was a member of the LA Galaxy (2011, 2012)
  • Bobby Shuttleworth is 2-2-0 against Houston, with three of four appearances coming on the road
  • 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.