FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Jay Heaps isn’t thrilled that his New England Revolution side has once again been forced to start the season with a string of road games.
It’s become standard practice throughout the years that the Revs play the majority of their early-season matches away from the chilly Northeast, having hosted only five total games in the month of March. Through 19 seasons, New England has opened the campaign at home just once; a 3-0 win over the Houston Dynamo in 2008. All told, the Revs are 3-1-1 at home in the month of March.
This year the Revs opened the season with back-to-back trips to BBVA Compass Stadium and PPL Park, where they suffered a pair of losses to the Houston Dynamo and Philadelphia Union. After finally opening their home slate on Saturday, the Revs will then head back on the road to visit the San Jose Earthquakes and D.C. United on consecutive weekends.
“I think it’s very difficult,” said Heaps. “It’s an unfortunate situation that we have to deal with and we go about it, but at the same time, when you get your chance at home, you’ve got to take it.”
New England will get that chance at home this weekend when the club hosts Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Saturday afternoon. Having improved upon their home record in each of the past two seasons, the Revs will be looking to continue that trend in 2014 by bettering last year’s mark of 8-5-4.
For the players, who’ve spent 30 of the past 42 nights on the road when factoring in preseason trips and the first two regular-season games, hearing the home support on Saturday will be music to their ears.
“It’s amazing knowing that we’re at home for the first time. We’ve been having road trips and that’s one of the hardest things,” said Diego Fagundez. “For us, it was just two hard games. Now we’re coming home and we’re coming with everything to get points at home. That’s what we want.
“Once we’re out there, I think everyone’s going to be feeling it. All the fans are definitely going to be supporting us and that’s what we want. We want them behind us and I think that’s what’s going to get us the victories.”