MLS Regular Season | Match #26
New England Revolution vs. Austin FC
Saturday, September 2 | 7:30 p.m. ET
Gillette Stadium | Foxborough, Mass.
Watch: MLS Season Pass on Apple TV
English Talent: Erik Krakauer (Play-by-Play), Lloyd Sam (Analyst)
Spanish Talent: Diego Pessolano (Play-by-Play), Pablo Marino (Analyst)
Radio: 98.5 The Sports Hub (English); 1260 AM Nossa Radio (Portuguese)
Radio Talent: Brad Feldman (Play-by-Play), Charlie Davies (Analyst)
- Call also available to sync on MLS Season Pass
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New England Revolution
2nd in Eastern Conference (13-5-7, 46 pts.)
Last Result | 1-0 win vs. New York Red Bulls
The New England Revolution bounced back to winning ways on Wednesday night with a hard-fought 1-0 triumph over the New York Red Bulls at Gillette Stadium. Giacomo Vrioni’s first-half effort separated the sides in Foxborough, as the Revs delivered an instant response to Saturday’s 1-0 setback at CF Montréal. The victory extended the hosts’ impressive home record of 10-0-3 in 2023, as one of only two sides in MLS to remain undefeated on their own turf (alongside Supporters’ Shield leaders FC Cincinnati). Having lifted themselves back into second spot in the Eastern Conference with just nine games left of the regular season schedule, the Revolution will have sights set on six points from this week’s two-game homestand to ensure they head into the following three-game road stretch full of confidence.
10th in Western Conference (9-12-5, 32 pts.)
Last Result | 2-1 loss vs. Seattle Sounders FC
Austin FC have endured a mixed campaign, currently sitting one point below the playoff line with a 9-12-5 record in the Western Conference. Though the Texan side stand as the joint-fourth highest scorers in the division, they have conceded the second-most goals leaguewide, and have suffered five straight losses in all competitions since the start of Leagues Cup play. Following successive 3-1 defeats in the tournament group stage, the Verde and Black fell to defeat to St. Louis CITY SC, state rivals FC Dallas, and Seattle Sounders FC. A 90th-minute Albert Rusnák strike denied Austin a point last time out against Seattle and with 15 goals conceded in their last five fixtures, Josh Wolff’s side will hope to tighten things up at the back in their chase for a playoff place.
Saturday’s encounter marks the first-ever game between the two clubs with Austin joining MLS as an expansion side in the 2021 season.
Overall Record vs. Austin FC: 0-0-0
Revolution midfielder Tomás Chancalay
The Argentine stepped out for his New England home debut in Wednesday night’s win over the Red Bulls, after making his first appearance from the bench at CF Montréal, and will look to kick on as he continues to settle into his new club. Still finding his form, learning a new system, developing new partnerships and building up his minutes (having last played a competitive game in May before joining the Revolution), the winger will hope to impress and mount a run of momentum, eager to make an impact between now and the end of the season. Notching a notable return of 17 goals and nine assists in 80 games for Racing Club, Chancalay made the move to Massachusetts with the hope of bolstering the New England attack, and the Revs certainly haven’t seen the best of the midfielder yet.
Austin FC forward Sebastián Driussi
With 10 goals and three assists in 23 appearances in all competitions this term, the 2022 MLS All-Star will certainly be one for the Revolution to watch. The attacking midfielder has bagged two goals in his last three games – four in his last seven – topping Austin’s scoring charts for the year. He also stands as team-lead for total scoring attempts and dribbles in MLS play, and has registered the second-highest number of tackles and duels for the Verde and Black. Tied for second amongst the 2022 MLS top scorers to steer his side to second spot in the Western Conference, he was included in the league’s Best XI and claimed runner-up spot as a finalist for the Landon Donovan MVP award. Having plied his trade with River Plate and FC Zenit St. Petersburg before making the move to the U.S., the Argentine boasts a glittering résumé, and has tallied eight goal involvements in 13 games since returning from a month-long injury absence in June.
New England Revolution
New goalkeeper Tomáš Vaclík is awaiting international clearance, while defenders Andrew Farrell and DeJuan Jones could return after missing the last two games through injury. Ryan Spaulding and Jacob Jackson, who were absent in Wednesday’s win over the New York Red Bulls with head injuries, are listed as questionable. Christian Makoun and Tommy McNamara are pushing to feature, having both made the bench following spells on the sidelines. Elsewhere, Gustavo Bou has been ruled out for up to a month with a leg injury. Brandon Bye (ACL), Dylan Borrero (ACL), Henry Kessler (hamstring) and Maciel (Achilles) remain unavailable.
Midfielder Dani Pereira could return after serving a red card suspension against Seattle, while defender Leo Väisänen featured for the first time since May against the Sounders, introduced from the bench for the first time since suffering an LCL injury. Zan Kolmanic (right ACL) is a long-term absentee.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Revolution assistant coach Richie Williams on a tight turnaround and facing Austin FC:
“Preparations have been short obviously with a quick turnaround from Wednesday, but we're ready. We'll be ready to play tomorrow against a good Austin team. They had a great season last year. They've been a little up and down this season results-wise, but they're still very good team. They have some really good attacking players that we're going to be aware of. We obviously respect our opponent and want to make sure that we have an understanding of how they're going to play, but at the end of the day, it's up to us in terms of how we come out, especially being at home and with how we did the other night [against the Red Bulls] where we came out with a lot of energy and intensity, letting our football take over when necessary. We’ve got to make sure we're ready ourselves.”
On goalkeepers Earl Edwards Jr., Tomáš Vaclík and Jacob Jackson:
“Earl has done a really solid job for us. He’s played well and he's now obviously our number one, with Djordje [Petrović] moving over to Chelsea. We've been happy with Earl. He's done a really good job for us, and we want him to continue to do that. When Tomáš comes in, there's always just competition for places so everybody understands that. It will be a new player in, and he'll have to compete for the position. Earl is up for it, same thing with Jacob, and we’ll have three really good ‘keepers competing to be the number one.”
Revolution goalkeeper Earl Edwards Jr. on stepping into the number one spot:
“I think the biggest thing for me is controlling what I can and preparing myself to play. That’s something I've done my whole career. An opportunity has presented itself, and I'm happy about that. I want to seize the opportunity, hope to continue to get wins and finish up the season strong.”
On being ready to face Austin:
“It’s been a quick turnaround – three games in a week is a lot, and we do what we can to be prepared. We have every expectation to get three points on our home field and that's what we're prepared to do.”
On Dave Romney’s consistency in the defensive backline:
“He's just solid. You see game in, game out, he's there. He does his job to the highest level, and I think it's something that he's gained a reputation for across the league. My first experience with him – seeing him play our very first game – I got the feeling he was a guy that was going to be steady for us back there, and that's been the case. With all the injuries, it's nice to have a guy that's been starting consistently and doing his job to a high level.”
On his pride for Wednesday’s shutout against the New York Red Bulls:
“You saw in the game having [Matt] Polster back there – he has years of experience playing in that [right back] position – and Ben Sweat … We had a ton of experience in our backline and I think it showed, but generally speaking, getting a shutout at this level is always difficult and something to be celebrated as we do, and we hope to keep that going moving forward.”
On working under assistant coach Richie Williams:
“He's been good for us. The messaging from the start has been: ‘Control what you can; come in, be professional and do your job.’ That's what everyone in the building is doing ... It was a case of just recognizing where we were at – obviously, we were in Leagues Cup at the time but to recognize where we were in the table, being second in the East. We have an unbelievable opportunity to make a run in the playoffs and with such a strong roster and potential to make a run, that's something that we're still very much holding on to and want to focus on, and we want to close the year off strong, regardless of outside circumstances.”