FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – If the key to a successful playoff run is getting hot at the right time, Saer Sene is more than ready for the New England Revolution’s upcoming postseason push.
Last year’s leading scorer has reemerged as one of the Revolution’s most dangerous attackers in recent weeks, registering two goals and three assists in the last four matches. And that’s without the benefit of the perfectly good goal he had wiped off the board in Chicago because of an incorrect offside decision.
Those figures have put a smile on the face of head coach Jay Heaps, who also praised Sene’s work on the defensive side of the ball as a winger in the Revolution’s hybrid 4-3-3 formation.
“He’s reading the game well, he’s playing a good high line and he’s finding good angles to get in behind,” said Heaps. “But defensively he’s putting the work in. That’s what we demand of our guys out there and he’s doing an excellent job.”
Although Sene has made 22 appearances – including 12 starts – since returning in April from ACL reconstructive surgery, the dynamic Frenchman admits he’s spent much of this season working his way back to full fitness. While the knee has been full strength for months, returning to top form – and regaining the confidence required to thrive in a creative attacking position – has taken longer than anticipated.
“I’m really, really close; I’m almost there,” said Sene. “When I’m playing, I don’t think anymore about my knee. I’m just going out there and having fun on the field. It’s going well and I want to keep going.
“I’ve been working hard since coming back from my injury. I think I’m getting back on my form. It’s a little bit late, but the end of the season is an important part and I’m getting better and better. I’m almost 100 percent.”
Sene’s recent performances reflect that assertion, while his jubilant celebration after scoring the opening goal against the Houston Dynamo last weekend revealed just how much the 26-year-old is enjoying himself at the present time.
With the Revs entering October one point back of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, Sene’s sense of timing could not be any more acute.
“It’s the right time (to heat up),” he said. “We have four games left and I want to try my best and do everything to go to the playoffs and help the team.”