20220716_PHI_Preview

MLS Regular Season | Match #20
New England Revolution at Philadelphia Union
Saturday, July 16 | 7:30 p.m. ET
Subaru Park | Chester, Pa.

Watch: WSBK-TV38, myRITV (Rhode Island), CoziTV (Western Mass.)
- Talent: Brad Feldman (play-by-play), Charlie Davies (analyst)
Listen: 98.5 The Sports Hub (English), 1260 AM Nossa Radio (Portuguese)

CURRENT FORM

New England Revolution
9th in Eastern Conference (6-6-7, 25 pts.)
Last Result | 4-2 loss at New York City FC

The Revolution’s 10-game unbeaten run came to a bizarre end last weekend at Yankee Stadium, where the Revs became the first team in MLS history to be whistled for three penalty kicks in a single game and had center back Andrew Farrell sent off in a 4-2 loss to New York City FC. Gustavo Bou scored twice more to push his tally to six goals in the last seven games and Djordje Petrović was once again stellar between the pipes, but ultimately the Revs suffered their first loss since mid-April.

Saturday will see the Revs continue their three-game road swing in Philadelphia, where they’re 2-0-1 on their last three trips, including a 1-0-1 record in the 2021 regular season and a 2-0 victory in Round One of the MLS Cup Playoffs in 2020.

Philadelphia Union
1st in Eastern Conference (9-2-9, 36 pts.)
Last Result | 2-1 win at Inter Miami CF

The Union moved back into first place in the Eastern Conference on Wednesday night, getting goals from Dániel Gazdag and Cory Burke in a 2-1 road win over Inter Miami CF. The victory was Philadelphia’s third in their last five games (3-1-1) as Jim Curtin’s side has found a winning formula after an eight-game stretch in which they played to seven draws (1-0-7) from mid-April to mid-June. Led by a league-best defense (14 GA), their two losses through 20 games are the fewest in Major League Soccer.

Philly have been especially good at home, going an unbeaten 5-0-5 at Subaru Park, one of just two teams in MLS – along with Real Salt Lake – yet to lose on their home ground. Their most recent home game was a record-setting 7-0 win over D.C. United last weekend, matching the largest margin of victory in MLS history.

KEY PLAYERS

Revolution forward Gustavo Bou
New DP signing Giacomo Vrioni is soon set to arrive and provide a boost to the New England attack, and he’ll join a group that already boasts one of the league’s hottest strikers in Gustavo Bou. The Argentine forward bagged his third MLS brace last weekend against NYCFC and now has six goals and one assist in his last seven appearances, including the Revs’ lone goal in their 1-1 draw with the Union on May 28 at Gillette Stadium.

Bou’s surge has sparked the Revolution to 31 goals in 19 games – a pace of 1.63 goals per game, good for sixth-best in the entire league. The Revs have scored multiple goals in 13 of their 19 games this season while being shut out just twice.

Union forward Julián Carranza
While the Union are led by the only defense in MLS conceding less than one goal per game (0.70 GAA), they’ve been buoyed by the attacking exploits of Julián Carranza, who has racked up seven goals and four assists in his first season in Philadelphia. Carranza had been on loan from Inter Miami until midweek, when the Union officially triggered a purchase option to make the 22-year-old Argentine a permanent piece in Philly.

Carranza snapped what had been a six-game goalless drought in a big way last weekend, registering a hat trick in Philadelphia’s 7-0 win over D.C. He didn’t feature when the Revs and Union played to a 1-1 draw on May 28 while serving a one-game suspension for yellow-card accumulation.

STATUS REPORT

Revolution
Matt Polster returned from a three-game absence with a substitute appearance last weekend at Yankee Stadium, and the Revs are once again fully healthy heading into Saturday’s trip to Subaru Park.

The Revs will, however, need to account for an absence on the backline as center back Andrew Farrell will serve a one-game suspension after being sent off in the Bronx. Jon Bell, who has appeared in each of the Revs’ last six games, came on last weekend to partner Henry Kessler, while Omar Gonzalez and Ben Reveno present additional options.

Union
Jack Elliott started 33 games for the Union last season and had started the first 19 games of the current campaign until missing Wednesday night’s win over Inter Miami. The 26-year-old center back, who has been a key piece of the Union’s MLS-best defense, is listed as questionable for Saturday’s game with a knee injury.

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

New England Revolution sporting director and head coach Bruce Arena
“It’s obviously going to be a low scoring game, which is very typical with the [Philadelphia] Union. It’s going to be hard fought, and it’s going to go down to the last minute. You need to be as mistake free as possible and as you can in this game, which is not easy to do. They obviously have a good defensive record, so I would not recommend us falling behind.”

New England Revolution midfielder Sebastian Lletget
“I thought we actually played really well at home against them. I thought their backs were against the wall the entire game. I guess anything that’s been a common theme with us if we can just minimize mistakes. Especially after we score goals. I think one thing we do well is as a team, we do score. We always create a lot of chances. I do recall, particularly against them, we worked so hard to get the first goal and then within a minute we give up [a goal]. It’s just things that are in our control. As long as we get those things right, we can beat anybody in this league.”