Top Stories

Revs deliver Mother’s Day masterpiece in romp over Sounders

DiegoFagundezSounders2014 (USA Today Sports)


FOXBOROUGH, Mass.– No team had been able to quell the juggernaut Seattle Sounders since the start of April, but the New England Revolution proved on Sunday that its own recent hot streak was no fluke either.

The Revs scored four goals in the first half, including the first two of the season by Diego Fagundez, in a 5-0 dismantling of a Sounders team that came into the match on a five-match winning streak.

“It definitely gets our hopes up,” said the 19-year-old Fagundez. We’ve battled against three good teams in the past couple of games and we’re doing well against them and that’s what we want.”

New England pushed its own unbeaten streak to five matches. Doing so on the strength of a lightning-fast counter that overwhelmed a sluggish-looking Seattle side that looked to have been feeling the effects of playing three games in nine days, with consecutive cross-country flights thrown in.

Though tired legs may have played it part, the Sounders defense was terribly out of sync as Lee Nguyen, Teal Bunbury, Patrick Mullins and Fagundez ran circles around the visiting team’s defense.

“I think maybe psychologically, maybe we weren’t as alert as we needed to be in certain occasions, you know, around the box and maybe defensively as well,” Sounders coach Sigi Schmid said. “Our positional defense was not good.”

The Revs defense also turned in an outstanding performance, pushing their shutout streak to 360 minutes by stifling the league’s most dangerous attack. Bobby Shuttleworth (6 saves) survived the Sounders’ forward duo of Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins, pocketing his fourth shutout of 2014.

New England (5-3-2) move into a tie for first place in the Eastern Conference with the victory, moving even with Sporting Kansas City on points, though Sporting KC have a match in hand.

“We don’t send messages, we just play hard,” Revs coach Jay Heaps said, downplaying the final score. “We’re just going out and playing what’s on our schedule. Every game for us is hugely important.”

The Sounders controlled the opening run of play, but things turned quickly after rookie Patrick Mullins tallied his second goal in as many weeks in the 14th minute.

The play started on a quick give-and-go between Chris Tierney and Fagundez, with the left back serving in a dangerous cross. Keeper Stefan Frei saved Teal Bunbury’s initial try at the right post, but Mullins followed up to bang home the rebound.

“I wanted to make sure I put myself in a position to where, if the ball bounced away, I was ready to pounce on it,” said Mullins, who also scored the equalizer in last weekend’s win over Toronto FC.

Fagundez doubled the lead in the 29th minute in the sequence following a right side corner by Lee Nguyen. Tierney played the ball forward to Fagundez, who was inexplicably left unguarded in the box for a rocket inside the left post. The youngster, who still lives with his parents, Washington and Alicia, in Leominster, made heart symbol for his after-goal celebration to commemorate Mother’s Day.

“My mom has been here since the first day, from the first day I signed and from the first day that I played, so it’s great that she still supports me everywhere that I go,” Fagundez said. “She still comes to every game and sees all the goals.”

The bounces continued to go New England’s way on its third goal as Nguyen played Bunbury through in the 36th minute and Frei was there to deny him at the left post. The rebound went back to Bunbury and he finished from a tough angle left of goal as Frei’s attempt at a kick save failed.

Fagundez added his second goal on a ruthless 41st-minute counterattack as Bunbury delivered a looping long ball on a dime. The 19 year old chested it down and squared up to deliver a side-footer past Frei to set it at 4-0 at the intermission.

“I knew (Seattle right back DeAndre Yedlin) would go up a lot and there was going to be space and I took advantage of that and they got punched for that,” Fagundez said.

The Revolution caught Seattle napping to make it 5-0 just 31 seconds into the second half. Bunbury had space right of goal and appeared to be serving it to the far post when his pass deflected in off Chad Marshall, tricking Frei for an own goal.

The result ruined the homecoming of former Revs star Clint Dempsey, who left New England to pursue glory in the English Premier League with Fulham FC after the 2006 season. Dempsey had been in-form before Sunday, sitting second in MLS with eight goals.

“We knew that (Dempsey and Obafemi Martins) like going central,” said Heaps, complimenting the play of midfielder Andy Dorman and center backs Andrew Farrell and A.J. Soares. “We wanted to make sure that we had numbers around those two guys, and when they got the ball we had to get pressure to it immediately. They’re going to get the ball, you just have to make sure they’re not getting it behind you.”

The win continues a strong run for the Revs, who beat Sporting KC at home two weeks ago and earned their first ever win in Toronto last weekend.

The Revs’ next match is Saturday on the road against Philadelphia. Seattle will look to bounce back next Saturday at home against the San Jose Earthquakes.


  1. Sounders need to work on threatening from outside the penalty area. They try to bring the ball in so close that defenses just pack it in. Start dropping the ball out to Pappa or Pineda to fire one in from 20+ yards. That will force defenses to come out and defend, thus opening space inside the box so that Oba/Deuce don’t get triple-teamed.

    • Agree 100%. BUT, Pineda is a liability on transition D, and if the lose the ball against a good team in transition – NYRB, Salt Lake, Portland, obviously the Revs 0 they’re in trouble. The have to work on their midfield defense.

  2. Where is the guy who thinks Yedlin will be our starting RB in Brazil? Dirk maybe? I do like him but he’s young and needs time. He’ll be in the mix in Russia if he improves and becomes a better defender.

  3. for those who dont like de’andre yedlin because he is young and has potential. just think of it this way kelyn acosta will be better in 4 years

  4. overrun in midfield was Seattle. No defensive presence n the midfield besides Alonso who could not do it by himself of course. Seattle was continuously caught with numbers high and overexposed, just Alonso back in midfiled. Ives pointed out Seattle was paying for the mid week game and it looked like that played a part, no intensity or legs to track back

    • This is another area of weakness that I’ve noticed from Seattle, along with Yedlin’s willingness to consistently overcommit or just get beat: their midfield has a hard time tracking back and defending. There’s no way they will win the MLS cup like this. Up to now they’ve used their offense as a defense (credit to Marshall though too), but this is not sustainable even with the taken of Dempsey/Oba/Pappa.

  5. Bit of a weird game, Seattle created a lot of good chances early and did nothing with them and were punished. If you look at the game stats you would guess it was a tie or 1 goal game, not a 5 goal blowout. NE looked really good on the counter, which an area where Seattle has been vulnerable all year long. Fagundez getting going could be massive for them. Seattle should probably just push this game out of their memory, bad performances like this will happen from time to time, they had been playing with fire allowing early goals and finally got burned.

    • I agree with this – I think Seattle will be fine in the long run and should just put this behind them. As a Revs fan I’m delighted with the result, but I didn’t think Seattle played terribly in the first half – just the key passes/bounces/individual battles went to the Revs (the second half was generally uninspired, but for obvious reasons). This type of game happens from time to time (New England blitzed LA last year also, and got lit up themselves by Houston the first game this year before they even knew what hit them). The Martins/Dempsey combo alone should get them to the playoffs, and every game that goes by will be added experience for Yedlin, which you can only get from occasional days like this.

    • reignman: I get what you mean, but I hope they don’t entirely push it from their memory. I hope the defensive errors of Traore and Yedlin stick in Sigi’s mind so he will finally make tactical changes to address them.

      And offensively, Seattle needs to remember this result so they will pull the trigger early and often.

  6. Please drop Yedlin from the starting squad. Please. He has the discipline of a youth team player and he’s costing us points.

  7. Once Martins saw he wasn’t in Nigeria’s World Cup team he also realized he doesn’t care. Seemed like he lost the ball every time he touched it.

  8. DeAndre Yedlin might be the worst right back in the league from a defensive standpoint. At what point does Schmid end the entertainment. Put him at right wing if you want someone roaming the wings (Neagle already… so?).

    • This may be some of the biggest hyperbole I’ve ever seen. Yedlin had a rough game today but get real, he’s a serious talent who is only 20 (maybe 21). He has some defensive kinks to work out but his ability to get forward is very important in the modern fullback

      • The ability to play defense is important. He is simply not a starting defender.

        He’s a major liability for the team, and this is NOT a single game incident. This is a long-term trend.

      • Of course being able to defend is important but he is not the worst defensive RB in the league, come on now. I still feel he will develop and I’ve always laughed at people who talked about him for Brazil, he clearly needs more experience at this point.

      • I should also add its a lot easier to defend when you never go forward, clearly he is asked to get forward which is naturally going to pull you out of position.

      • Not to mention that a good deal of his preparation has to be focused on learning the attack.

        But he has a lot to learn.

      • Bach’s Thumb: “a long-term trend”

        How do you direct that criticism toward a very young player who has all of 1.3 seasons under his belt? He hasn’t even been around “long-term.”

      • In some regards I see what Bach is speaking of: He overcommits and gets smoked by talented MLS players, consistently. It does make one wonder. . . . but wow he is good on the attack. He would make a good winger.

  9. Beautiful, absolutely beautiful. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen the Revs play as fluidly as they did in the first half. And that’s from a 17 year season ticket holder (1997). Just awesome.


Leave a Comment