News & Notes: July 22, 2014

Revs return home to host Columbus Crew on Saturday

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Revolution returns home this Saturday, July 26, when the team hosts the Columbus Crew at Gillette Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m., with Comcast SportsNet televising the game and 98.5 The Sports Hub carrying the game on the radio.

A limited number of Andrew Farrell bobbleheads will be given away at the stadium’s entry gates prior to the game.

The Revolution (7-10-2, 23 pts.) returns home after a two-game road trip to LA and Dallas last week. The Revs will play seven of their next nine games at Gillette Stadium, leading to mid-September. New England is currently tied for fifth in the Eastern Conference standings, even on points with Philadelphia and Columbus.

Columbus (5-7-8, 23 pts.) is 1-3-4 in its last eight games, with last Saturday’s 2-1 win over Montreal its first victory since May 24. The Crew’s defense features Cranston, R.I., product Michael Parkhurst, who began his career with the Revs in 2005 before moving to Europe.

Saturday’s meeting is the first of three contests between the two teams this season. The Revs will visit Columbus on Sept. 20, and then host the third and final meeting at Gillette Stadium on Oct. 4.

TEAM NOTES

Farrell Bobblehead Debuts Saturday
Andrew Farrell will be featured in the second of three Revolution bobbleheads released this season ... his mini-me will debut this Saturday when the Revs host the Columbus Crew at Gillette Stadium at 7:30 p.m. ... Farrell’s bobblehead features his signature infectious smile, gap tooth and beard ... a limited number of the Farrell bobbleheads will be distributed at the entry gates at Gillette Stadium on July 26, so fans are encouraged to enter the stadium early.

Comforts of Home
The Revolution return home this week to face the Columbus Crew on Saturday, July 26 ... kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. ... the team has spent the last week on the road, playing away matches at LA on Wednesday, July 16, and at Dallas on Saturday, July 19.

Against Columbus
The Revs are set to face the Columbus Crew on Saturday in the first of three meetings between the teams this season ... the Revolution is 20-29-11 all-time against the Crew in MLS regular-season play, including an 12-13-5 mark in matches played in New England ... included in that mark is a 8-7-4 record at Gillette Stadium ... this is the third straight season that the teams will meet three times ... the Revs swept the series in 2013, topping Columbus 3-2 at Gillette Stadium on Oct. 19, and posting 2-0 and 1-0 wins at Crew Stadium on July 20 and Oct. 27, respectively.

Home Stand Looming
While the Revolution six of their last seven matches overall - both MLS regular-season and U.S. Open Cup - away from Gillette Stadium, seven of their next nine matches - all in league play - will be at Gillette Stadium ... between July 26 and Sept. 13, the Revs will play seven of their nine regular-season games at Gillette Stadium, with the only road trips to New York (Aug. 2) and Toronto (Aug. 31).

Jam-Packed July
With the Revolution’s advancement to the quarterfinals in the U.S. Open Cup, New England has a very congested schedule in the current six-week span … between June 25 and Aug. 2, the Revolution has 10 matches scheduled in the span of 39 days ... that span includes two USOC matches and eight league matches ... there are five home matches and five road matches (Salt Lake, Philadelphia, LA-Dallas joint trip and New York) ... before this current stretch, the Revolution did not play more than one game per week since the start of the season.

Two Streaks Not of the Same Feather
While the Revolution’s five-game winning streak (April 26 - through May 24) is tied for the longest winning streak in MLS this season (with Seattle), the team’s current seven-game losing streak (May 31 - present) is the longest in the league this season.

Soares Set to Return
A.J. Soares is set to return to the lineup on Saturday after he was forced to sit out last weekend’s match in Dallas after being shown a straight red card in LA on July 16 ... his 29th-minute tackle on Juninho was deemed by referee Ricardo Salazar to be dangerous, and the veteran ref sent Soares off.

Farrell Hits Fifty
Andrew Farrell made his 50th appearance - and 50th start – of his young career last Saturday night in Dallas ... drafted number one overall in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft, Farrell appeared in 32 of 34 matches as a rookie, and has started all 18 matches in which he’s appeared so far this season.

Tierney Set To Make It 150 & Join Elite Club
Chris Tierney enters Saturday’s match against Columbus with 149 career appearances ... should he appear in the match, Tierney will make his 150th-career appearance and become the seventh player in Revs history to make at least 150 appearances for the club, joining Shalrie Joseph (261), Matt Reis (254), Jay Heaps (243), Steve Ralston (201), Taylor Twellman (174) and Joe Franchino (162).

Fagundez Makes It a Record-Setting 75
Diego Fagundez made his 75th career appearance last Wednesday in LA ... he is now the youngest Homegrown player in MLS history to reach the 75-appearance mark as he did it at 19 years, 5 months and 2 days ... Fagundez topped the previous record holder, Andy Najar, who reached 75 career appearances for D.C. United at 19 years, 5 months and 13 days.

Rowe Reaches 75
Kelyn Rowe made his 75th career appearance when he entered the field as a 57th-minute substitute at Dallas last Saturday … Rowe was the fourth overall pick in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft out of UCLA and made at least 30 appearances in each of his first two seasons before hamstring injuries early this season set him off pace this year.

Revs Waiting for Days Gone “Bye”
With their designated bye weekend coming in Week 22 of the schedule (Aug. 9-13), the Revolution will be the last team in MLS who will enjoy a bye weekend outside of the league’s recent World Cup break … that bye will also come with open arms as the team is in the midst of a 10-games-in-39-days stretch leading up the bye weekend ... with the exception of Portland – who does not have an in-season bye week in their schedule besides the World Cup break – every other team in MLS will have enjoyed at least one bye weekend before the Revs sit out Week 22 of the schedule … this year’s schedule is a stark change from the 2013 slate that saw the Revs have two bye weeks in the first six weeks of the schedule: Week 1 and Week 6.

Alston to Make Improv Debut
Kevin Alston has had turbulent year after being diagnosed with leukemia, so it’s no wonder he wanted to inject some comedy into his life ... for the last few months, Alston has been taking improvisational comedy classes at Boston’s famed Improv Asylum (216 Hanover St., Boston, Mass.), and he is set to make his main stage debut on Wednesday, August 20, when Improv Asylum hosts Revolution Night ... tickets are $20 and a portion all tickets sold will benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ... in April 2013, Alston was diagnosed with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML), a rare but treatable form of leukemia. while CML does not yet have a cure, Alston has managed his health and has returned to the field ... while the show is set to start at 8 p.m., doors will open at 7 p.m. when fans are invited to mix and mingle with fellow fans and receive Revolution giveaways.