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
Deep Revs re-group for Chicago
by Ridge Mahoney, April 2nd, 2008 6:45AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  mls

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS]If any MLS team might be well-prepared to lose two of its best players, it's New England, which takes on Chicago Thursday in the first game of the ESPN2 doubleheader (7:30 p.m. ET) minus Taylor Twellman and Steve Ralston.

In addition to the Revs' annual cleanup at the MLS SuperDraft, which last year produced not one but two capable replacements - Adam Cristman and Wells Thompson - at forward, they have former Gambian U-20 internationals Sainey Nyassi and Kenny Mansally, and Honduran midfielder Mauricio Castro. Coming back from national duty with the Bermudan national team is Khano Smith, so once again, even without two of his stars, Coach Steve Nicol will have excess options to replace them.

Twellman missed last weekend's opener, yet the Revs thrashed defending champion Houston, 3-0, with Nyassi and Mansally scorching the Dynamo on numerous occasions. Upon further review, in Twellman's grouchy right knee was found a meniscus tear that will require surgery and approximately six weeks of rehabilitation.

In the same game, Ralston fell heavily under a challenge and suffered a dislocated shoulder. He will be re-examined Wednesday to determine the severity of the injury.

Nicol could move Castro, who played the left flank against Houston, to fill Ralston's central playmaking slot and use Smith on the left side, or jigger the formation. The Revs used a four-man back line several times in preseason as well as their standard 3-5-2 alignment that worked to great effect against Houston, thanks to stellar showings by central midfielders Shalrie Joseph and Jeff Larentowicz, and the back line of Jay Heaps, Michael Parkhurst and Chris Albright (Gary Flood replaced Ralston in the 63rd minute).

Earlier this week, the Revs signed former Clemson defender Chase Hilgenbrink, who trained with Colorado for two months before being released on the roster compliance date of March 3.

A veteran of several seasons in Chile, he can play left back, so Nicol could add him to a lineup with four in the back, yet Nicol might prefer to wait until 2008 first-round draft pick Rob Valentino, a rugged 6-foot-4 central defender who is scheduled to resume competitive action this week in a reserve match, is ready. Valentino would be an ideal complement to Parkhurst as a central partner in a four-man system.

Nicol sounded a cautious tone after the dismantling of the Dynamo and certainly teams will be better prepared to face the speedy, confident Gambian pair. Born two days apart in January, 1989, they inject elements of daring and pace into the Revs, somewhat similar to the impact of Smith the past few seasons. If Nicol puts all three of them on the field in Chicago, who have a few burners of their own as well as the roaming Cuauhtemoc Blanco, the cameras may not be able to keep up.



No comments yet.

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




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Video Pick: Pulisic scores against Man City    
Borussia Dortmund's 17-year-old American Christian Pulisic scored the stoppage-time equalizer in a 1-1 friendly tie with ...
MLS Moves: Castillo swept off his feet in Turkey    
FC Dallas star Fabian Castillo arrived in Turkey ahead of his anticipated transfer from MLS to ...
What They're Saying: David Luiz    
"It's important to be an example, especially for the kids. I work every day with this ...
MLS All-Star Game: Wondo ready for challenge    
All-Star Games are supposed to be wide-open, entertaining affairs, and if so, are tough tests for ...
U.S. women are off to Brazil -- opener next Wednesday    
The U.S. women's national team was off to Brazil Wednesday night to prepare for its quest ...
MLS Homegrowns lose to Mexico's U-20s    
In an appetizer to the MLS all-stars' game against Arsenal, a squad of MLS U-23 Homegrown ...
U.S. Abroad: Five Americans start in Tijuana Copa MX loss    
Tijuana started five Americans in its 4-0 loss to second division Lobos BUAP in Mexico's midweek ...
MLS Moves: Jones jumps ranks at Philadelphia    
Derrick Jones, the first player to sign with the Bethlehem Steel FC, became the first player ...
MLS All-Star Game: Soaking up the experience    
A guy like Sacha Kljestan, an 11-year pro and veteran of the UEFA Champions League with ...
Video Pick: Trick PK goes wrong in Peru    
Last February, Lionel Messi passed a penalty kick to Luis Suarez, who stroked home to complete ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives