Preview | Revs visit Crew in Eastern Conference showdown (Watch FREE on the Apple TV app)


MLS Regular Season | Match #8
New England Revolution at Columbus Crew
Saturday, April 15 | 7:30 p.m. ET Field | Columbus, Ohio

Watch: Watch FREE on the Apple TV app
     - English Talent: Max Bretos (play-by-play), Brian Dunseth (analyst)
     - Spanish Talent: Francisco X. Rivera (play-by-play), Claudio Suarez (analyst)
Listen: 98.5 The Sports Hub (English), 1260 AM Nossa Radio (Portuguese)
     - English Talent: Brad Feldman (play-by-play), Charlie Davies (analyst)


New England Revolution
2nd in Eastern Conference (5-1-1, 16 pts.)
Last Result | 4-0 win vs. CF Montréal

Dylan Borrero, Carles Gil, Bobby Wood, and Giacomo Vrioni all found the back of the net last weekend as the Revs rolled to a 4-0 win over CF Montréal, pushing their record to 5-1-1 (16 pts.) and keeping them just one point off the top of both the Eastern Conference and Supporters’ Shield standings. It’s just the second time in club history the Revs have won five of their first seven games, and the first time since 2005, when they started 6-0-1.

New England’s four shutouts have been key to their early success, but they’ve also been led by a consistently balanced attack. Through seven games the Revs have gotten goals from eight different players, tied for second-most in the league behind only Saturday’s opponent, Columbus (9). Meanwhile, the Revs have had four different players score multiple goals, tied for most in MLS along with Atlanta United.

Columbus Crew
4th in Eastern Conference (4-2-1, 13 pts.)
Last Result | 2-0 win at D.C. United

Led by new head coach Wilfried Nancy – who arrived this past offseason after guiding CF Montréal to a second-place finish in the Eastern Conference last year – Columbus have been one of the league’s hottest teams in recent weeks. They’ve won three straight games while outscoring opponents 12-1 in the process, while they’ve also scored 12 times and conceded just once in winning all three of their home games at Field.

While the Revs have been one of the league’s stingiest defensive sides, conceding just six times in seven games, Columbus boast Major League Soccer’s highest-scoring attack with 17 goals. It’s the most goals scored in Crew history through seven games, while it’s the fourth-most goals scored in MLS history through that same span.


Revolution midfielder Latif Blessing
Latif Blessing returned to the Revolution lineup last weekend after missing two games through injury, and the 26-year-old midfielder didn’t skip a beat with another stellar performance through the middle of the field. Playing 62 minutes against Montréal, Blessing led the Revs in chances created (3), successful dribbles (3), and duels won (7), earning praise from sporting director and head coach Bruce Arena.

Blessing could play a particularly important role on Saturday night in Columbus, where the Crew’s strength lies through central midfield with Darlington Nagbe and Aidan Morris.

Crew midfielder Lucas Zelarayán
Columbus has featured the league’s most balanced attack through the early part of the season, but there’s little doubt that Lucas Zelarayán is a key weapon for the Crew. The 30-year-old Argentine racked up double digits in both goals (10) and assists (12) last season, and he’s off to another fast start in 2023 with four goals and one assist through six appearances, including two goals and one assist in the last two games.

Former Minnesota United, LAFC, and Houston Dynamo forward Christian Ramírez has stepped in to score three goals in the absence of injured forward Cucho Hernández, but it’s Zelarayán who largely pulls the strings for the Crew’s attack.


Latif Blessing and Matt Polster both returned to the Revolution’s starting XI last weekend and seem likely to play key roles on Saturday night in Columbus, but there is a doubt about center back Henry Kessler. The fourth-year defender was replaced by Andrew Farrell at halftime of the win over Montréal and is officially listed as questionable.

“Certainly, Andrew [Farrell] and Omar [Gonzalez] are candidates to play in the back, as well,” said Arena. “We think we have improved depth in that position this year.”

The quartet of Nacho Gil (right leg), Jacob Jackson (left ACL), Maciel (left Achilles), and Tommy McNamara (left leg) all remain out, having yet to feature this season.

Information not available.


New England Revolution sporting director and head coach Bruce Arena
“Columbus is one of the better teams in MLS in this early part of the season. They’ve had incredible success in the attacking end of the field and from a combination of players. There’s not one player you can point to. Obviously, [Lucas] Zelarayán is an outstanding player. [Darlington] Nagbe in the midfield is excellent and so in my opinion, those are two of the top players in their positions in the league, so they’ll be very challenging, but they have a great home venue in Columbus and the game will be challenging. They’ve been very good, especially at home they’ve been outstanding, so it’s going to be a real difficult game.”

New England Revolution midfielder Matt Polster
“It starts from the top. I think this year we've done a pretty good job from the top two or three players where we put their team under pressure, and it's made it difficult to get the ball forward. And even then, when it does get into they're attacking third or our defensive third, I thought our backline and us midfielders have done a pretty good job of getting in the box, being in good spots, following runners, and preventing big chances. It's always nice even if we do give up a big chance, Djordje [Petrović] will find a way to make a big save. So, I think we have a really good collective group. I think guys are able to make plays and that's what's helped us get four clean sheets so far.”