Diego Fagundez scored his second goal of the season on a night when he became the youngest player to start a game for the New England Revolution, but Fredy Montero responded with a pair of goals for Seattle Sounders FC as the visitors claimed a come-from-behind, 2-1 win at Gillette Stadium on Saturday night.
Fagundez used his head to convert Benny Feilhaber’s corner kick in the 35th minute to give the Revs (5-14-12, 27 pts.) the lead, only for Montero to hit back for the Sounders (16-6-9, 57 pts.) just one minute later. Montero then notched the game winner in the 47th minute as Seattle escaped with all three points despite being outshot by a margin of 19-8.
The loss officially eliminated the Revolution from contention for a place in the 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs, while the Sounders continued to roll with their league-leading eighth road win of the season.
There were four changes to the Revolution lineup which suffered a 3-2 loss to the Chicago Fire last weekend at Toyota Park. Both A.J. Soares (L adductor strain) and Monsef Zerka (L quad strain) returned from injuries to regain their starting spots, while Soares was joined in central defense by Ryan Cochrane, who returned after missing the Fire match while attending to personal matters.
The most notable change to New England’s lineup was up top, where 16-year-old Fagundez earned his first career start after recording one goal and one assist in a trio of substitute appearances.
New England was sharp in the opening stages as the home side pressed for an early goal and Feilhaber almost found it in the 16th minute. Feilhaber’s in-swinging free kick from the left channel went untouched as it bounced through the box and Seattle goalkeeper Kasey Keller was forced into a sprawling save to push the ball around the post.
Four minutes later, Fagundez burst into the left side of the box as he ran onto Milton Caraglio’s through ball, but the teenager directed his shot wide of the right post with the outside of his right foot. Fagundez was the setup man in the 23rd minute when he teed up Ryan Guy for a close range drive, but Keller was again up to the task with a kick save.
The Revs finally made the breakthrough in the 35th minute and unsurprisingly it was Fagundez who got on the score sheet. Feilhaber’s corner kick found Fagundez free six yards from goal and the 5-foot-8 forward rose unmarked to power a header off the underside of the crossbar and across the line.
Seattle wasted little time leveling the score at 1-1, however, as Montero scored in the 36th minute. Cochrane misplayed a ball at the back, allowing Montero to sneak into the left side of the box. The Colombian made no mistake with his effort, driving a left-footed shot into the far side netting.
Montero struck again shortly after the halftime break as the Sounders took a 2-1 lead in the 47th minute. A scramble in the box finished with Nate Jaqua using his chest to direct the ball to Montero, who pounced to toe poke a shot past Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis as he charged off his line.
Reis prevented Montero from grabbing a hat trick in the 58th minute, diving full stretch to his left to keep the Colombian’s flashing header from crossing the line.
The Revs switched to a 3-5-2 formation shortly thereafter as they pushed for an equalizer, but their best chances – a 71st-minute shot from Caraglio hit straight at Keller and an 87th-minute drive from Pat Phelan which flew over the crossbar – went begging.