Revs defense tries to stop Wondolowski
The New England Revolution aren’t scoring much, but they’ve been spectacular defensively.
With the way goalkeeper Matt Reis has been playing, the Revolution might not need much offense against the San Jose Earthquakes to earn a rare West Coast win Saturday night.
The Revolution (3-3-4) have one goal in their last three matches, and they’ll need to generate more offense if they want to move up from fifth place in the Eastern Conference.
"We don’t concentrate enough and we don’t take care of the ball, but we had some good possessions a little bit tonight and we’re going to work on it coming up this week and try to be better in San Jose," captain Shalrie Joseph told the team’s official website after scoring in a 1-0 home win over Vancouver last Saturday.
New England, though, can’t do much better when it comes to protecting its end of the field. The Revs have not yielded a goal in 222 minutes, with Reis running his scoreless streak to 200 with a season high-tying six saves last week. He recorded his second shutout of the season and is one shy of tying Tony Meola for sixth all-time with 62.
Joseph’s franchise-record 10th penalty kick goal snapped the club’s 236-minute scoreless stretch, but New England has been shut out in its last two road games. The most recent was a 3-0 loss to Chivas USA on April 30 that dropped the Revs to 0-6-2 in their last eight matches on the West Coast.
New England fell 2-0 in its last visit to San Jose on April 17, 2010.
Reis has gone 3-3-2 with a 1.13 goals-against average against San Jose (2-4-3) while with the Revs. He will face an Earthquakes squad looking to build on its best offensive performance of the season, a 3-0 win over Columbus on Saturday that ended an 0-3-3 skid.
"It’s all coming together and we’re really happy with what we’ve done the last couple of games," striker Chris Wondolowski said after scoring in San Jose’s first home victory of the season. "Tonight was a good building block for us."
Wondolowski, the 2010 Golden Boot winner, will be looking to score for the fourth time in five games. With one goal, he’ll tie Dwayne De Rosario for third in franchise history with 27. Wondolowski found the back of the net in the Revolution’s last trip to San Jose.
Earthquakes midfielder Brandon McDonald will be unavailable for this game after receiving a red card last Saturday.
Teammate Ryan Johnson has recorded an assist in each of the last two games, but Saturday’s match will be his final one with the club for at least three weeks as he’ll play for Jamaica in the Gold Cup.
If Revs forward Rajko Lekic (left knee contusion) can’t go, Kheli Dube could get the start. Dube has two goals in five games against the Earthquakes, including the winner in a 1-0 road victory March 21, 2009.
San Jose is 17-11-5 versus New England.