FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Krisztián Németh’s deadline day arrival this past August was met with optimism and expectation by New England Revolution staff, players and fans, as the MLS-proven forward aimed to jumpstart a late-season playoff run in Foxborough.
A lingering calf injury derailed those plans, however, and an ill-timed red card in Kansas City also played a factor in Németh seeing just 34 minutes of action in four appearances through the end of September.
After experiencing more frustration than elation in his first two months Németh was handed a pair of starts in the Revolution’s final two games against New York City FC and the Montreal Impact, presenting a golden opportunity for the former Sporting Kansas City striker to establish himself with the Revs.
Németh grasped hold of his chance, firing off 10 shots in those two games and looking especially lively against Montreal, where he scored his first goal in New England colors and helped set up Diego Fagundez’s opener with an effort that struck the woodwork.
“I tried to enjoy these last couple games, and tried to help the team,” said Németh, who brushed off the importance of scoring his first goal with the Revolution.
There’s no doubt, though, that Németh’s performances in New England’s last two games – both wins – sent him into the offseason on a positive note, although he was frustrated to see the matches end just as he was nearing full fitness and rounding into form.
“I’m a little bit disappointed, of course, because I’m getting better every match, and I feel better every training (session),” Németh said after the season finale. “I’m a little bit disappointed to finish like this, but we’ll see. I hope next season we’re going to have a good team and we can make a big [improvement].”
As announced on Monday, Németh was one of five Revolution players already under contract for the 2018 season, and he’ll join nine others who had their contract options exercised to form the base of Brad Friedel’s squad during his first year in charge.