FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – A pair of goals from Jesus Padilla and additional strikes from Justin Braun and Blair Gavin lifted visiting Chivas USA to a 4-0 win over the New England Revolution on Wednesday night at Gillette Stadium.
For the second time in just four days, the Revs were forced to play much of the match shorthanded following the 29th-minute ejection of playmaking midfielder Marko Perovic. The red card compounded an already difficult situation for the Revolution, which was also without the suspended Kheli Dube and Joseph Niouky.
The loss extended the Revolution’s (2-4-1, 7 pts.) winless streak to four games, while the club finished its three-game home-stand with one draw and two losses. Chivas USA (3-3-1, 10 pts.), meanwhile, earned its second straight result on the road after grabbing a 1-1 draw in Chicago last weekend.
After using identical starting lineups for the first two games of the home-stand, head coach Steve Nicol was forced to ring in the changes to his starting 11 on Wednesday night. Dube and Niouky were both suspended after receiving red cards in last weekend’s draw with FC Dallas. As a result, Nicol switched from a 4-4-2 setup to a 4-5-1 formation, with Chris Tierney returning to the lineup to join Pat Phelan in central midfield, while Perovic played just ahead of them. Khano Smith earned his first start of the season, filling in for Perovic on the left wing, while rookie Zack Schilawski was deployed as a lone striker.
New England’s five-man midfield did the job of stifling Chivas USA in the early stages, as neither team seriously threatened in the opening 15 minutes. That situation changed as the game wore on, however, as the Goats slowly began to take control of the match.
The visitors first threatened in the 16th minute when Padilla’s left-wing cross found Braun open seven yards from goal. Braun connected with his header, but bounced his effort wide of the left post. Revs goalkeeper Preston Burpo – coming off a career-high, 10-save performance against FC Dallas – was called into action for the first time in the 20th minute, palming away Sacha Kljestan’s knuckling, 35-yard free kick.
It was just six minutes later that Chivas USA finally made the initial breakthrough, as Padilla capitalized on a miscue in the back to score his second goal of the season. Revolution right back Kevin Alston struggled to clear a bouncing ball, and Padilla pounced, rounding Burpo and finishing into an empty net.
The situation went from bad to worse for the Revs just three minutes later, when Perovic was shown a straight red card for his part in an altercation with Chivas USA midfielder Ben Zemanksi. Zemanski was issued a yellow card.
Chivas USA made the most of its numerical advantage in the 33rd minute, as Braun made amends for his earlier miss by powering through the Revolution backline and calmly finishing inside the right post.
Burpo was called upon once again in the 41st minute, making a big save on Braun to keep the score at 2-0 going into the halftime break.
It didn’t take long for the Goats to extend their lead to three goals, however, as Padilla notched his second of the game in the 48th minute. Chivas USA expertly worked the ball across the top of the box from right to left, with Kljestan providing the final ball for Padilla to finish from inside the box.
Only a fantastic effort from Cory Gibbs prevented the visitors from taking a 4-0 lead in the 60th minute. Braun’s deft chip over Burpo was destined for the back of the net, but Gibbs backtracked and managed to acrobatically clear the ball of the line.
The Revolution’s first shot on goal finally arrived in the 64th minute, and it was an impressive effort off the foot of Phelan. The central midfielder unleashed a long-range drive from all of 30 yards, and it took a fantastic save from Chivas USA goalkeeper Zach Thornton to tip the ball over the bar.
It was Chivas USA which rounded out the scoring in the 81st minute, however, when Gavin scored the first goal of his MLS career. The former Akron midfielder fought through a challenge outside the box before blasting a left-footed shot just inside the left post from 20 yards out.
After playing three straight at home, the Revs will return to the road this weekend when they visit the Columbus Crew on Saturday, May 8. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. from Crew Stadium.
New England Revolution (2-4-1, 7 pts.) vs. Chivas USA (3-3-1, 10 pts.)
May 5, 2010 – Gillette Stadium (Foxborough, Mass.)
CHV – Jesus Padilla (Braun) 26
CHV – Justin Braun (Trujillo) 33
CHV – Jesus Padilla (Braun, Kljestan) 48
CHV – Blair Gavin (unassisted) 81
New England Revolution: Preston Burpo (GK), Kevin Alston (Edgaras Jankauskas 46), Cory Gibbs ©, Darrius Barnes, Seth Sinovic, Khano Smith, Pat Phelan, Chris Tierney (Nico Colaluca 77), Sainey Nyassi, Marko Perovi?, Zack Schilawski (Kenny Mansally 71)
Substitutes Not Used: Bobby Shuttleworth, Mauricio Castro, Zak Boggs
STATS: Shots: 5; Shots on Goal: 2; Saves: 5; Corner Kicks: 4; Offside: 1; Fouls Committed: 7
Chivas USA: Zach Thornton (GK), Mariano Trujillo, Michael Umana, Dario Delgado, Jonathan Bornstein, Gerson Mayen, Ben Zernanski (Marcello Saragosa 60), Blair Gavin, Jesus Padilla (Jose Macotelo 67), Justiin Braun (Maicon Santos 74), Sacha Kljestan ©
Substitutes Not Used: Kevin Guppy, Jorge Flores, Carlos Borja, Chukwudi Chijindi
STATS: Shots: 15; Shots on Goal: 10; Saves: 5; Corner Kicks: 4; Offside: 3; Fouls Committed: 7
CHV – Ben Zemanski (caution) 28
NE – Marko Perovi? (ejection) 28
NE – Edgaras Jankauskas (caution) 86
Referee: Steven DePiero
Referee’s Assistants: Joe Fletcher, Claudio Badea
Fourth Official: Siliu Petrescu
Weather: Clear and 75 degrees
- The loss drops the Revolution’s all-time record against Chivas USA to 5-4-2 … the Revs subsequently lost their first match to the Goats at Gillette Stadium, moving to 4-1-1 all-time against Chivas USA in Foxborough.
- New England suffered its worst home loss ever at Gillette Stadium … the last time the Revs lost by four goals in Foxborough came on Aug. 8, 2001 to San Jose.
- The Revolution came out with a 4-5-1 look against Chivas USA … the change marked the first time this season Steve Nicol did not trot out a 4-4-2 to begin the match.
- Chris Tierney returned to the lineup to make the first start of his career at central midfield, while Khano Smith earned his first start of the season at left midfield … Tierney was replaced in the second half by Nico Colaluca, who saw his first action of the season.
- Kheli Dube and Joseph Niouky were both suspended for the match because of the straight red cards they were shown during the previous match with FC Dallas (May 1).
- Marko Perovic was shown a straight red card in the 28th minute and was ejected … that marked the third time this season and second straight game a Revolution player was issued a red card.
- Wednesday marked the first game in 2010 where the Revs surrendered more than two goals in a single game and more than one first-half goal.
- Preston Burpo surrendered four goals in a game for only the second time in his career … the only other time Burpo let up four goals came at New York on Sept. 28, 2007, when he played for Colorado.
- Chivas USA scored its first goal at Gillette Stadium since 2007 … the Goats had been shut out during their 2008 and 2009 visits to Foxborough.
- Kevin Alston came out of the game at halftime with a hamstring injury … he was replaced by Edgaras Jankauskas.