The New England Revolution scoreless streak is now over 300 minutes as the Revs lost 1-0 to FC Dallas on Saturday in front of 10,284 fans at Gillette Stadium.
After beating the Chicago Fire 1-0 on their seaon opener, New England have failed to score since. And the lack of goal scoring chances has to worry Revs boss Jay Heaps. Before a Diego Fagundez shot in the first half, New England went 300 minutes without a shot on goal. You cannot win games if you don’t get shots on goal!
Part of the Revs problem is formation. Against FC Dallas Jay Heaps went with a more traditional two-forward setup against Dallas with Jerry Bengtson and Ryan Guy up front. Behind them were
Juan Toja, Lee Nguyen, Diego Fagundez with Clyde Simms in the holding role.
Nice attacking formation, but none of that attacking five are known for their defensive word and Revs got overrun in midfield it the first half when FC Dallas had 62.4% possession.
In the second half, the Revolution started off much better but once again the final pass let NE down. Some nice play until they got within 25 yards of goals and then ran out of ideas.
And that is where tempo comes into play. If you watch any of the top teams around the world they all play at a quick tempo. They move the ball around quickly, one or two touch play, moving the defence around and creating openings.
When you tempo is too slow, the other team has time to regroup and set up their defence and that is what the Revs are facing these days.
The solution is to pay at a quicker pace through midfield but that is difficult when you have a black hole like Juan Toja.
Toja never plays the simple first touch, he always wants three or four touches and that totally slows down the Revs attack. For every nice move that Toja makes, he breaks the rhythm on four or five other attacks.
If Jay Heaps is to avoid another long losing streak this season he needs to have his side playing at a quicker tempo. Moving Rowe into the Toja role would he a big step in that direction.