Major League Soccer MVP candidate Lee Nguyen scored both of the New England Revolution’s goals to lead the Revs to a 2-1, come-from-behind victory on the road over the Houston Dynamo. Nguyen scored his 16th and 17th goals of the year in the 65th and 87th minutes, respectively, to help New England overcome a 1-0 halftime deficit.
With the win, New England (16-13-4, 52 pts.) secured at least a third-place finish in the Eastern Conference, avoiding the Knockout Round between the four and five seeds. The Revs have one game left – next Saturday, October 25, at Gillette Stadium against Toronto FC. With the loss, Houston (11-16-6, 39 pts.) dropped the season series to the Revs, who went 2-1-0 against the Dynamo this season.
Giles Barnes staked the Dynamo to a 1-0 lead in the 37th minute after he pounced on the rebound of an Omar Cummings shot that Bobby Shuttleworth initially saved.
But the Revolution retook command in the second half thanks in large to the play of second half substitutes Charlie Davies (58th minute) and Jermaine Jones (63rd minute). Two minutes after Jones entered, he helped set up the equalizer, springing substitute left back Kevin Alston down the wing. Alston’s low cross found Nguyen unmarked at the top of the area, and the league’s leading midfielder calmly slotted his shot high past Tyler Deric.
The Revs continued to push and struck for the go-ahead goal three minutes from time. Jones again was involved, restarting a play on the left side before hitting a deflected cross that found Charlie Davies inside the area. The Revolution forward to then put a shot on frame, only for Dynamo defender Kofi Sarkodie to clear the shot off the line. However, the rebound fell to Darrius Barnes, who played a short, square pass to Nguyen for the game-winning goal.