Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
MLS's marquee matchup: New England-Kansas City
by Ridge Mahoney, August 2nd, 2007 7AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

MLS PREVIEW
NEW ENGLAND (8-3-6) vs. KANSAS CITY (8-5-5)
Thursday, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN2

Praise be given to The Worldwide Leader in Sports for adding the perceived MLS David Beckham debut Sunday against Toronto FC to its schedule, but between the lines, New England-Kansas City at Gillette Stadium on Thursday night is the marquee matchup of the week, if not the month.

The hometown Revs lead the East, the Wizards are a point back in second, and when the teams last met, Eddie Johnson lit up New England with a hat trick in a 4-3 spectacular. Rematches of shootouts often fizzle rather than sizzle, yet these are two strong teams playing crisp soccer, at least on the offensive end.

Kansas City has conceded four goals in the past two games, tying Colorado, 2-2, and edging past Chivas USA, 3-2, so Wizards Kerry Zavagnin and Sasha Victorine may stay at home to track Andy Dorman and Jeff Larentowicz. Both Zavagnin and Larentowicz scored last weekend, with the begoggled Larentowicz smashing home the winner from a free kick with eight minutes left to down Real Salt Lake, 2-1.

If both teams clog the penalty areas, good scoring chances may fall to midfielders drifting in behind the congestion. Revs' Shalrie Joseph and Steve Ralston both scored in the 4-3 loss May 26 at Gillette Stadium. (The teams conclude the season series Aug. 19 at Arrowhead Stadium.)

New England shared six goals with Houston before beating RSL, and the Revs have conceded 1.5 goals per game at home, so Coach Steve Nicol will likely tighten up his system as well. Pat Noonan has scored in the last two games, and his sense of space and clean touches can lure defenders away from Taylor Twellman and Dorman.

Johnson has resumed scoring since returning from U.S. duty and unless distracted by transfer rumors may be even more dangerous than in the last meeting, since forward partner Davy Arnaud is playing his best soccer of 2007. His three assists in the last four games are only hints as to how effective he's been lately pushing balls to teammates or nicking past tacklers on the dribble. Scott Sealy is out with an adductor strain, so how Arnaud uses his touches will determine how many opportunities can be created for Carlos Marinelli, Michael Harrington and Victorine as well as Johnson.

Or someone can just lay it off to Zavagnin and let him blast away. It worked against Chivas USA with a 30-yard Goal of the Week that is a serious candidate for the yearly honor.

Of the two keepers. Matt Reis' recent play surpasses that of Kevin Hartman by a notch or two. The result may come down to which of the two is sharpest.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Sebastian Saucedo strikes twice as U.S. U-20s advance     
The USA moved into the second stage of the men's Concacaf U-20 Championship with a 4-1 ...
Roster: U.S. U-23 women head to Spain    
The U.S. U-23 women's national team will play Japan (March 2), England (March 4) and Norway ...
USWNT: No Klingenberg, no A-Rod for SheBelieves Cup    
U.S. women's national team head coach Jill Ellis has named the 23-player roster for the 2017 ...
Report: UCL headed to Turner and Univision in 2018    
Turner Sports and Univision have snatched the U.S. media rights to the UEFA Champions League away ...
U.S. Soccer: U-17 and U-20 women's coaches to be replaced    
B.J. Snow is no longer U.S. U-17 girls national team coach and Michelle French is out ...
U.S. Abroad: Johnson's M'Gladbach pulls miracle comeback    
Fabian Johnson came off the bench for Borussia Moenchengladbach as it came back from 2-0 down ...
Sneak Peek: Potent Impact seeks resiliency and depth    
Last year Montreal stunned Red Bulls, 3-1, on aggregate and took a commanding lead against Toronto ...
What They're Saying: Perry Dealy    
"It's worth preserving because we don't have a lot of icons. It would save a lot ...
Sneak Peek: Vieira is convinced NYCFC will be improved    
In his first season, Patrick Vieira proved that a foreign coach unfamiliar with MLS could find ...
Sneak Peek: Timbers look as good as ever    
From MLS champion in 2015 to out of the playoffs in 2016, it was quite a ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives