The New England Revolution have matched a franchise record with
a nine-game winless run, but the Philadelphia Union also can’t be
too confident after a winless August.
These struggling teams have had little time to prepare for
Saturday night’s matchup in New England, where the Revolution will
look to beat the Union for the first time.
New England (6-14-6) enters with the franchise’s fifth nine-game
winless streak, a 0-7-2 slide including blown multiple-goal leads
in the last two contests. The Revolution let a two-goal advantage
slip away in a 4-3 defeat at Columbus last Saturday before blowing
a three-goal lead Wednesday in a 3-3 home draw with Chivas USA.
“This game is such a mental game at times,” midfielder Ryan Guy
said Wednesday. “I think right away whether we liked it or not,
memories of our last game crept into our minds.”
Philadelphia (7-13-4) has gone 0-3-2 since a 2-1 home win over
New England on July 29. The Union also blew a lead Wednesday in a
2-1 home loss to the 10-man Crew, allowing the winning goal in the
fifth minute of second-half stoppage time.
“You want to get back out there and redeem yourself and your
efforts and everything you did,” coach John Hackworth told the
Union’s official site. “That’s the good news.
“The hard part about that is that it’s the third game in a week
and it’s very tough to recover from. We’re going up to New England,
on turf, and it’s going to be difficult.”
Hackworth was named the permanent coach Thursday. He has guided
the Union to a 5-6-2 mark since replacing Petr Nowak on June
The major storyline currently for Philadelphia is Freddy Adu’s
inability to get on the field. Adu has logged 21 total minutes as a
substitute in the Union’s last two games.
He hasn’t scored since a penalty kick in the victory over New
England in July. That tied the contest and Jack McInerney won it
with a goal in the 90th minute.
Philadelphia is 3-0-2 against New England and has won both
previous visits to Gillette Stadium.
Both teams could be without key players Saturday.
Union captain Carlos Valdes suffered a hamstring injury in the
second half against Columbus, and his status is unclear.
“I always want to play,” the defender said. “I never want to
come out. I’ll work with the trainers and I’m sure they’ll do
everything they can.”
While Philadelphia’s defense will be hampered if Valdes does not
play, New England’s attack would suffer without top scorer Saer
Sene scored twice Wednesday to push his team-high goal total to
11, but he exited in the second half with a knee injury.
“We don’t know yet if (Sene) is going to be all right,” coach
Jay Heaps said. “He’s a special player for us and someone that when
we score goals, he seems to be around it. He’s creative and he’s
dangerous and he’s unique.”
Philadelphia is 0-7-2 in road games outside of two wins at The
Home Depot Center.