FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – While the New England Revolution are set to resume the regular season on August 20 against the Philadelphia Union, they will press forward without last year's leading goal scorer and their chief playmaker, Carles Gil, who will miss three-to-five months as he recovers from successful surgery on his left Achilles tendon.
“I spoke with him and I was happy to learn everything went well with his operation,” Gustavo Bou said through a translator. “He’s very motivated to return and join us again. Hopefully he recovers and joins us soon. We’re going to miss him because we know what he brings to the team and we know he’s an important player for us.
“But we have to understand that Carles isn’t here. We have to do everything possible to lessen the impact of his absence. We’re working well. We’re trying to accommodate ourselves offensively to make up for his absence.”
On July 17 against D.C. United the reigning MLS Newcomer of the Year re-aggravated the injury that forced him to miss most of preseason and the first two games of the regular season. The ailment caused Gil to miss the following pair of matches against Toronto FC and the Union.
“We’ve had two full games without him, and half a game,” head coach Bruce Arena said about experimenting with player depth without Gil available in those matches at the MLS is Back Tournament. “We’ve made the adjustments in our team.
“A lot of players are going to be called on. We have a little bit of that experience from the tournament, so hopefully that pays some dividends. I anticipate that we’re going to have to make changes each and every game along the way.”
As the Revs prepare to play six regular-season matches in 23 days beginning next week, they understand that especially without Gil available, all players will need to be ready when their names are called.
“It’s hard to really fill a gap like Carles,” said Teal Bunbury. “He’s an unbelievable player, great guy in the locker room, great teammate, great friend, but I think he’s going to come back stronger than ever. He’s such a hard worker, so I think his recovery’s going to go really well.
“But it’s an opportunity for guys to step up. That’s what this sport is all about, is when someone gets injured, it’s an opportunity for someone else to kind of step up and showcase what they can do.”
Following Gil’s surgery, a unique secondary transfer window opened on August 12, and it won't close until October 29 because of the unprecedented circumstances of the 2020 season. With a potential opportunity to add to the roster, Arena spoke with regards to if the club will look to address Gil’s absence in the transfer window.
“Are we going to do anything in the transfer market to replace him?” said Arena. “No, I don’t believe so. We’re at three Designated Players at the moment. We wanted to strengthen our team a little bit with a No. 6. We brought in Matt Polster.
"There could be a trade or two in the league, but I don’t anticipate us looking outside the league in this transfer window. But having said that, things can change.”
New England are set to kick off their next stretch of regular-season games against the Philadelphia Union on August 20. The match begins at 7:30 p.m. ET from Gillette Stadium, with coverage on NBC Sports Boston, 98.5 The Sports Hub, and 1260 AM Nossa Radio USA.