FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Lee Nguyen assisted on goals scored by Saer Sene and Dimitry Imbongo as the New England Revolution climbed above the .500 mark with a 2-0 win over the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday night at Gillette Stadium.
Sene scored what proved to be the game winner just 13 minutes into the match with a knuckling long-range rocket, while Imbongo came off the bench to clinch the full three points with his second goal of the season in the 78th minute. Goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth needed to make just two saves to help the Revs keep their league-leading 10th clean sheet of the season.
The win was the first for the Revs (6-5-6, 24 pts.) in more than a month and the three points keep them firmly in the thick of the playoff hunt at the season’s midway point. San Jose (5-9-6, 21 pts.) finished out a two-game road trip with its second straight loss.
Sene needed two long-distance cracks to beat San Jose goalkeeper Jon Busch in the 13th minute, but eventually found the back of the net to give New England a 1-0 lead. The Frenchman’s first drive was pushed away by Busch, but Chris Tierney and Nguyen combined to get the ball back to Sene quickly and his second attempt flew past the Earthquakes goalkeeper and under the crossbar.
Making his second regular-season start of the season, Chad Barrett was also involved early as the Revs pressed for a second goal. Barrett narrowly missed connecting with Diego Fagundez on a low pass through the box in the 20th minute, then chipped an effort inches wide of the far post after bursting down the left side in the 28th minute.
The Revs continued to pile on pressure throughout the first half and only an incredible kick save from Busch denied rookie Andrew Farrell from notching his first MLS goal in the 34th minute.
Halftime didn’t slow down the hosts, who went close twice more shortly after the break when Nguyen and Kelyn Rowe both had shots hit the outside of the net.
It took until the 78th minute, but the Revs finally broke through for a second time as Imbongo finished off a flowing move to make it 2-0. From the right wing, Rowe slipped a clever pass into the path of Nguyen, whose low pass inside the six was slammed home by Imbongo.
The Revs will be home once again next weekend when they’ll host the Houston Dynamo on Saturday, July 13. Kickoff from Gillette Stadium is set for 7:30 p.m.
New England Revolution vs. San Jose Earthquakes
July 6, 2013 – Gillette Stadium (Foxborough, Mass.)
New England Revolution 2, San Jose Earthquakes 0
NE – Saer Sene (Lee Nguyen) 13
NE – Dimitry Imbongo (Lee Nguyen, Kelyn Rowe) 78
New England Revolution: Bobby Shuttleworth, Chris Tierney, Jose Goncalves ©, Stephen McCarthy, Andrew Farrell, Diego Fagundez (Juan Toja 88), Lee Nguyen, Scott Caldwell, Kelyn Rowe, Saer Sene, Chad Barrett (Dimitry Imbongo 68)
Substitutes Not Used: Matt Reis, A.J. Soares, Ryan Guy, Darrius Barnes, Clyde Simms
STATS: Shots 19, Shots on Target 8, Corner Kicks 6, Saves 2, Fouls 16, Offsides 2, Passes 286 (77.6%), Possession 44.9%
San Jose Earthquakes: Jon Busch, Steven Beitashour, Brad Ring, Jason Hernandez, Dan Gargan, Shea Salinas, Sam Cronin ©, Rafael Baca (Marcus Tracy 76), Walter Martinez (Mehdi Ballouchy 84), Alan Gordon (Cordell Cato 87), Adam Jahn
Substitutes Not Used: David Bingham, Justin Morrow
STATS: Shots 9, Shots on Target 2, Corner Kicks 4, Saves 7, Fouls 16, Offsides 1, Passes 360 (78.9%), Possession 55.1%
* Note that all statistics are unofficial as supplied by Opta
SJ – Walter Martinez (caution) 35
NE – Andrew Farrell (caution) 37
SJ – Dan Gargan (caution) 83
NE – Dimitry Imbongo (caution) 93+
Referee: Jose Carlos Rivero
Assistant Referees: Corey Parker (SAR), Daniel Belleau (JAR)
Fourth Official: Daniel Radford
Weather: Clear and 88 degrees
San Jose Earthquakes – 5-9-6 (21 pts.)
New England Revolution – 6-5-6 (24 pts.)
- With the win on Saturday, the Revs improved 12-20-5 against San Jose and ended a five-game winless streak dating back to August 29, 2009
- The Revs also improved their home record against the Earthquakes to 7-10-2
- The Revs improved their home record to 4-2-3
- The Revs are now 2-3-3 against Western Conference opponents this season … the Revs close out play against the Western Conference on July 17 at the Colorado Rapids
- Saturday’s win extended the Revolution’s current home shutout streak to four games … the Revs last conceded a goal on May 11 in a 1-1 draw against the New York Red Bulls
- The Revs eight shots on target on Saturday tied the team’s season high (at Chivas USA, June 29)
- Saturday also saw the Revs tie their season high for attempts on goal with 19 (vs. Philadelphia, April 27)
- Saer Sene scored his second goal of the season on Saturday … both of Sene’s goals this season have been game-winners
- Dimitry Imbongo scored his second goal of the season … Imbongo scored against Vancouver (June 15) in the team’s 4-3 loss
- Lee Nguyen recorded his second and third assists of the season on Saturday … Saturday marked Nguyen’s second multi-point game this season and first multi-assist game as a Rev
- Chris Tierney moved into a tie for 10th place with Kevin Alston for all-time appearances (116) … of Tierney’s 116 appearances, 105 have been starts
- Bobby Shuttleworth recorded his league-leading eighth shutout of the season (Portland’s Donovan Ricketts has eight shutouts as well)
- Scott Caldwell made his fifth start in six games for the Revs … Caldwell has seen all of his time in the central midfield this season