Recap | Revolution fall to Columbus Crew SC, 1-0, in Eastern Conference Final

Carles Gil vs. Columbus Crew SC (2020, Colonial)

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The New England Revolution (8th seed) fell to Columbus Crew SC (3rd seed), 1-0, in the Eastern Conference Final of the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs at MAPFRE Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Revolution goalkeeper Matt Turner delivered six saves to keep New England within striking distance until the final whistle, but Columbus advances to MLS Cup through the game’s lone goal in the 59th minute from midfielder Artur.

The loss ends the Revolution’s deepest playoff run since 2014, as the Revs equaled single-season records for postseason wins (three) and away wins (two). The eighth-seeded New England side defeated the Montreal Impact in the last minute of second-half stoppage time of the Play-In Round, before eliminating Supporters’ Shield winners Philadelphia in Round One, and finally knocking off fourth-seeded Orlando City SC.

The Revolution’s all-time postseason record moves to 20-18-9 with today’s result, and 4-1-3 against Columbus in the MLS Cup Playoffs.

New England managed to out-possess the hosts on the night and recorded 10 shots, but could not put one of its three on target past Crew SC goalkeeper Andrew Tarbell. In net for the Revolution, Turner set a new personal best in postseason play with six saves, including several key stops highlighted by a diving deflection on a long-range bid from Pedro Santos in the 39th minute, and a denial of a point-blank chance from Gyasi Zardes in the 58th minute.

Forward Gustavo Bou paced the Revolution with four shots, while Adam Buksa added three – with each putting one on frame. In the midfield, captain Carles Gil led the team with 75 touches and won four fouls.

New England Revolution 0, Columbus Crew 1

December 6, 2020 – MAPFRE Stadium (Columbus, Ohio)

Revolution Fall to Columbus, 1-0, in Eastern Conference Final at MAPFRE Stadium

  • The New England Revolution fell 1-0 to the Columbus Crew in the Eastern Conference Final of the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs on Sunday afternoon at MAPFRE Stadium.
  • Columbus midfielder Artur scored the lone goal of the match on assists from Jonathan Mensah and Lucas Zelarayán in the 59th minute.
  • Sporting Director and Head Coach Bruce Arena’s all-time postseason record shifts to 35-13-6, including a 3-2-0 mark with the Revolution.
  • New England’s all-time postseason record shifts to 20-18-9, which includes a 7-16-3 mark on the road and a 4-1-3 record against Columbus.
  • The Revolution matched club records for playoff wins (3) and wins on the road (2) in a single postseason.

Goalkeeper Matt Turner Registers Postseason-Best Six Saves

  • Revolution goalkeeper Matt Turner logged a postseason high six saves in today’s contest, surpassing his MLS Cup Playoffs high of four saves set three times.
  • Turner, who finished second in 2020 Allstate MLS Goalie of the Year voting, finished the postseason with 16 saves over four contests.
  • Turner’s all-time postseason record shifts to 3-2-0 and his career mark against Columbus across all competitions moves to 0-2-1.
  • Turner’s three victories this postseason match a club record for a single postseason, also set by Adin Brown (2002) and Bobby Shuttleworth (2014).

New England’s Designated Player Trio Paced Revolution’s Attack

  • Forward Gustavo Bou posted a team-best four shots today, including one on target. Fellow Designated Player Adam Buksa followed with three shots, one on target.
  • Midfielder Carles Gil, wearing the captains’ armband, successfully completed 42 of 53 pass attempts, won four fouls, created two chances and logged 75 touches.
  • The Revolution’s Designated Player trio, which played just 250 minutes together during the regular season, recorded its fifth consecutive start together in today’s match. The trio accounted for six of New England’s seven goals this postseason and all three players logged full 90-minute shifts today.

Revolution Deploy Unchanged Starting Lineup

  • Bruce Arena deployed an unchanged Starting XI from last Sunday’s Round One victory at Orlando, marking the third consecutive game in which the Revolution’s lineup featured no changes.
  • Tajon Buchanan recorded four tackles, three clearances and one interception in his fourth consecutive start at right back.
  • First-year defender Henry Kessler posted team highs in clearances (6) and interceptions (4), while successfully completing 36 of 44 pass attempts over a full 90-minute shift.
  • Kelyn Rowe logged his 12th postseason appearance in today’s match and eclipsed 700 career minutes played in MLS Cup Playoffs with his 20-minute shift off the bench.
  • Homegrown Player Justin Rennicks recorded his third career postseason appearance with a five-minute shift off the bench. The South Hamilton, Mass. native, who won four of five duels today, appeared in three of four contests this postseason.


Referee: Armando Villarreal
Assistant Referee: Frank Anderson (AR1), Eric Weisbrod (AR2)
Fourth Official: Robert Sibiga
Video Assistant Referee: Jon Freemon
Weather: 36 degrees and cloudy

Scoring Summary:
Artur (Jonathan Mensah, Lucas Zelarayán) 59’

Misconduct Summary:
Pedro Santos (Yellow Card – Unsporting Behavior) 90+3’

New England Revolution: Matt Turner; DeJuan Jones (Justin Rennicks 85’), Henry Kessler, Andrew Farrell, Tajon Buchanan (Kelyn Rowe 70’); Matt Polster, Scott Caldwell (Tommy McNamara 70’); Teal Bunbury (Brandon Bye 61’), Carles Gil ©, Gustavo Bou, Adam Buksa

Substitutes Not Used: Brad Knighton, Michael Mancienne, Lee Nguyen, Diego Fagundez, Kekuta Manneh

Columbus Crew: Andrew Tarbell; Josh Williams, Jonathan Mensah ©, Milton Valenzuela, Harrison Afful; Darlington Nagbe, Pedro Santos, Artur, Lucas Zelarayán, Luis Diaz (Emmanuel Boateng 80’); Gyasi Zardes

Substitutes Not Used: Matt Lampson, Fanendo Adi, Hector Jimenez, Aidan Morris, Fatai Alashe, Krisztian Nemeth, Aboubacar Keita, Youness Mokhtar