FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Revolution (8-7-6, 30 pts.) returns home on Sunday, Aug. 4, to host Toronto FC (3-10-8, 17 pts.) at 7:30 p.m. at Gillette Stadium. Sunday’s match will be the second of three meetings between the two clubs this year. The Revs won the first meeting, 2-0, at Gillette Stadium on May 25.
Comcast SportsNet will televise the game while 98.5 the Sports Hub will have the game on the radio.
The Revs, who sit tied for fifth in the 10-team Eastern Conference with 30 points, are currently occupying the fifth and final playoff spot in the East.
THIS WEEK’S HEADLINES
Alston returns to the field
Kevin Alston returned to the field at D.C. United on Saturday, making his first appearances since March 30 after being diagnosed with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML), a rare but treatable form of leukemia … Alston checked into the game in the 84th minute at left back and the played the final 10 minutes of action in front of more than 50 family and friends in his hometown.
Second spell with Toronto FC next
The Revs return home Sunday road to host Toronto FC after three straight games on the road … the Revs took the first meeting against the Revs, a 2-0 win at Gillette Stadium on May 25 … Diego Fagundez scored the game-winning goal, while Juan Agudelo added a late insurance goal to seal the three points at home … the two teams close out the three-game season series at BMO Field on Friday, Aug. 30.
Sunday is Alzheimer’s Awareness night
The Revolution will support increased awareness of Alzheimer’s disease when the team hosts an Alzheimer’s Awareness Night, in partnership with the Alzheimer's Association, MA/NH Chapter on Sunday … highlighted activities of the night will include a pre-game recognition on the field, a procession ahead of the teams as they walk out onto the field and the Alzheimer’s Association tables set up at the stadium with information about their research, education and advocacy programs … a special ticket promotion, where a portion of each ticket price will be donated back to the Alzheimer’s Association, is available HERE using the promo code “Revolution”.
Right in the playoff mix
The Revs earned an important three points on the road against D.C. United on Saturday as the club continues to press for a playoff spot … the Revs win, coupled with a draw in the Houston-Chicago match, pushed the Revs into the fifth and final playoff spot with 13 regular-season games remaining … all of the Revs’ remaining regular-season games will be against Eastern Conference opponents … the Revs are 6-3-3 against the East this year, and the combined winning percentage of the team’s remaining schedule is .469.
Six points separates the top six teams in the Eastern Conference heading into the beginning of August … Sporting KC leads the East with 36 points in 22 games, while New York (35 points, 22 games) and Montreal (35 points, 20 games) are tied for second … Philadelphia has 34 points (22 games), while New England (30 points, 21 games) and Houston (30 points, 20 games) round out the top of the conference … of the top six teams in the conference, three teams – New York, Montreal and Houston –have three games remaining against the West, while three teams – Kansas City, Montreal and Houston – also are set to enter the CONCACAF Champions League draw in the next few weeks.
The Revs are now 6-3-3 against the East this year, and have posted their most wins against conference opponents since 2007 when the Revs went 7-6-5 against the East in a 32-game season … with all 13 matches remaining scheduled against Eastern teams, the 2013 Revs have an opportunity challenge their best-ever mark against Eastern teams: 9-5-4 in 2005 when the Revs went 17-7-8 on the season and won the East.
Resiliency on the road
The Revs have posted back-to-back road wins in their last two matches, pushing their season away mark to 4-4-3 on the season … the team’s four wins away from Gillette Stadium are the most since 2009, when the team 4-6-5 in 15 road games … the Revs’ .500 winning percentage on the road is tied for second-best in MLS (behind Sporting KC’s .591 mark), and tied with Philadelphia, Real Salt Lake and Portland Timbers … in 2012, the Revs went 2-13-2 (.176 winning percentage) on the road, the worst mark in MLS.
Home cooking hopefully tastes great
After playing three straight games on the road, the Revs now return on Sunday against Toronto FC … six of the team’s next nine games will be played at Gillette Stadium … in 2013, the Revs are 4-3-3 at home … in 10 home matches, the Revs have allowed only six goals (an 0.60 goals against average), and have posted six shutouts … against East opponents at home this year, the Revs are 2-1-3 on the season, allowing just three goals.
Defense continues to prove its worth
As the MLS schedule shifts into August, the Revs continue to claim MLS’ top defense … through 21 games, the Revs lead the league in goals against average (0.90), shutouts (11) and saves percentage (75.3, tied with Portland) … Saturday’s win at D.C. also marked the 16th game – in 21 – that the Revs have allowed one goal or fewer in a game.
Fagundez finding the net
Diego Fagundez scored his team-leading seventh goal of the season against D.C. United on Saturday, marking his second straight game with a goal … with seven goals, Fagundez is tied for seventh in MLS on the MLS goal-scoring chart this year … of the midfielder’s seven goals, four of them have been game-winners and he is tied for second in MLS in that category.
Imbongo finding his form
Dimitry Imbongo’s second-half goal against D.C. United on Saturday leveled the score at 1-1 and helped the Revs post the come-from-behind victory … Imbongo now has three goals on the season, all of which have come in the last seven games … Imbongo has appeared in nine games – starting four … his goal on Saturday was his first coming as a starter this season … his previous two goals (at Vancouver on June 15 and vs. San Jose on July 6) came when he entered the game as a substitute.
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 by the Revolution … 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.
THIS WEEK’S OPPONENT INFO
Revolution vs. Toronto FC (regular-season): 5-3-6
Team Notes against Toronto
- New England leads the all-time, regular-season series between the two clubs, 5-3-6
- The Revs are 5-1-2 against Toronto at Gillette Stadium in eight regular-season games
- Sunday’s match is the second of three meetings between the two clubs this season … the Revs took the first game of the series, 2-0, on May 25 at Gillette Stadium … the teams end the series on Aug. 30 at BMO Field
- Toronto won the season series in 2012, posting a 1-0-1 record and earned its first win at Gillette Stadium in club history
- Six out of the 14 matches between the two teams have ended in a draw
- The Revs have out-scored TFC, 24-15, in their 14 previous meetings
- The Revs have shut out TFC four times while the Reds have posted three shutouts in the all time regular-season series
- In home games against Toronto, the Revs have averaged 2.00 goals per game while Toronto has averaged 0.50 goals per game at Gillette Stadium
The Revolution and TFC have never met outside the MLS regular season
Player Notes against Toronto
- Andy Dorman rudely welcomed Toronto into MLS in 2007, scoring a pair of goals in the teams’ first-ever meeting … the midfielder has three goals in three career games against TFC
- Juan Agudelo has scored three goals in three games against Toronto … his first goal against TFC as Rev came earlier this year on May 25
- Diego Fagundez has one goal – a game-winner – in three career games against TFC
- Chad Barrett has one career goal and assist against the Reds as a member of the Chicago Fire
- Chris Tierney has one goal and three assists in nine career appearances against Toronto … Tierney set up Diego Fagundez for the game-winner against TFC on May 25 … Tierney’s first two career assists were recorded at BMO Field against Toronto FC: on Aug. 23, 2008 and May 23, 2009 … his lone goal against TFC was a 94th-minute equalizer at BMO Field on June 23, 2012
- Clyde Simms recorded two assists against TFC while a member of D.C. United
- Saer Sene is the only other current Revolution player to record an assist against TFC … Sene assisted on Juan Agudelo’s goal on May 25
- Matt Reis is 3-1-4 with a 1.13 goals against average and three shutouts in eight career games against Toronto
Bobby Shuttleworth is 1-1-1 against TFC, with a 1.00 goals against average … Shuttleworth earned his first victory over Toronto on May 25
THIS WEEK IN ROCHESTER
- The Rhinos earned its fourth win of the season with a 1-0 win over Antigua Barracuda FC at Sahlen’s Stadium on July 28
- On the season, Rochester is 4-8-10 and is 11th in the 13-team USL PRO … the Rhinos have four games remaining in their season: Aug. 2 vs. Dayton, Aug. 9 vs. Pittsburg, Aug. 16 at Phoenix and Aug. 17 at Los Angeles
- 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 1146 minutes played in 16 games … Polak has made 15 appearances and has played 919 minutes … Horth is the only other player to record a goal and has played 749 minutes in 14 games
Latigue suffered a knee injury in training on July 22, and has returned to Foxborough for treatment … before the injury, Latigue played 871 minutes in 16 games with two assists.