As one of two rookies in the starting lineup for New England's season-opening 1-0 loss in Los Angeles on Saturday night, Revolution defender Seth Sinovic felt the weight of opening his professional career in the starting lineup.
He just didn't let the significance of the occasion impact how he performed on the field.
“I got through it in warmups,” Sinovic told reporters after the game. “Once the game got going, I knew what I had to do and knew that I couldn’t let any nerves get in my way.”
Sinovic earned the call at left back as Revolution coach Steve Nicol shuffled his back four to accommodate for the absence of Darrius Barnes (right hip flexor strain). Sinovic built on an impressive training camp by registering a solid performance in his first MLS appearance, though he said he wished his side had managed to figure out a way to snatch some points from the match.
“Obviously we’re a little disappointed with the result, but in the second half we started to play a little more and we created a few more chances,” Sinovic said. “Personally, it was just exciting being out there.”
Fellow rookie starter Zack Schilawski shared those sentiments after playing the full 90 minutes up top. The former Wake Forest striker said he thought the Revs improved considerably after easing their way into the match and finding their feet.
“I think that looking back, it was fun,” Schilawski said. “Obviously, we’re a little disappointed in the result. It was frustrating at times, but I think that once we settled in, moved the ball around and had a little more possession, it was good.”
Second-half substitute Zak Boggs made it a trio of rookies on the field after replacing Sainey Nyassi on the right wing in the 58th minute. Boggs said he relished the opportunity to begin his career in southern California.
“For me personally, it was about just getting my feet under me,” Boggs said. “This was my first official game so that was cool and it was a great atmosphere. Hats off to all those other rookies that made their debut. I’d also never played at the Home Depot Center, so that was cool.”
In addition to handing three rookies their professional debuts, Nicol selected Joseph Niouky for his first MLS game in central midfield. The Senegalese midfielder earned the call with Shalrie Joseph (right hip flexor strain) sidelined and played the full match in the center of the park.