The New England Revolution played a hard fought game against Atlanta United on Sept. 30 with the result being a 0-0 draw.
The Revolution were looking to make up for the last time they played Atlanta, which ended up being a 7-0 defeat for New England.
Even though Atlanta United has already clinched a playoff spot, the Revolution is still hoping to secure a playoff before the regular season ends.
Securing a point from this match means that New England is gaining on the New York Red Bulls and lies four points behind the sixth and final playoff spot for the Eastern Conference, with two games left in the season.
So that means if New England wins their next two games and takes away all six points, they could qualify for the playoffs, despite their lackluster season.
With this being said, New England can’t afford to drop any more points the next two games if they want to qualify for the Eastern Conference playoffs this year.
Interim coach Tom Stoehn made some changes to the starting lineup, but most notably starting second choice goalkeeper Brad Knighton over first choice Cody Cropper.
Even though this change was met with some criticism, Knighton performed exceptionally well, making two key saves and making sure Atlanta’s offense was not going to score, despite Josef Martinez’s many efforts to score.
Knighton’s performance also helped the Revolution extend their unbeaten streak at home to seven straight matches.
During this unbeaten run at Gillette Stadium, the Revolution outscored opponents 15-4 and claimed a 6-0-1 record. (Revolutionsoccer.net)
Atlanta were without their key player, Miguel Almirón, and it was made obvious that he is an integral part of the Atlanta squad.
Without him, New England dominated the game, out-possessing Atlanta by 21.8 percent (Revolutionsoccer.net). Atlanta United’s midfield seemed tired and not as cohesive without Almirón, making it a little easier for New England to control possession.
Despite Almirón not playing, the Revolution’s offense could not get any goals past United States National Team legend and Atlanta goalkeeper Brad Guzan, who only allowed five shots on target, saving all of them.
The New England Revolution hope to get one step closer to clinching playoff qualifications when the play New York City FC on Sunday, Oct. 15 in their final home game of the season.
And under Tom Stoehn’s management, I think the Revolution just might be able to do it.
Luke Stergiou can be conatcted at email@example.com