Preseason 2015

Discussion in 'New England Revolution' started by Soccer Doc, Jan 17, 2015.

  1. soccertim

    soccertim Member

    Mar 29, 2001
    Mass
    No, they're all successful enough that they can rest on their laurels and not waste too much time trying to get better.
     
  2. SuperRevsGooner

    Aug 17, 2007
    Boulder CO (transplanted New Englander)
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The thing is, average in MLS used to mean guys like Pat Phelan, and Scott Caldwell is a far more intelligent and skilled player than Pat ever was. There are weaknesses for sure...RB is a big question mark, and I'm not convinced by Kelyn playing on the wing day in and day out. Tierney would be a better option if he wasn't slow. But overall, even our average players are amongst the top of the league average, so I don't think that's the issue.

    The biggest defensive puzzle was solved when JJ came in. Prior to that pickup we had a 2.43 goals against average, after JJ that came down to 1.00. The issue we had in the final (which frankly, was a tight match lost on a heartbreaker...it wasn't a blowout, the world didn't end) was our play in the final third, and Agudelo is going to fix that. The guy is too good to not have a positive effect on the team. Consider that we kept the same forward crew throughout the whole season, and the pre/post JJ goals scored number hardly changes (1.33 GS prior to August, 1.10 after), which indicates IMO a need to upgrade offense. If we can maintain a 1.5 GA average throughout the season, I think we'll win the supporter's shield. If we can hold on to a 2.0 average, I think we're still within a shout of it.

    I don't think we've ever fielded a stronger side in club history, than the one we're fielding in 2015.
     
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  3. Revs in 2010

    Revs in 2010 Member+

    Feb 29, 2000
    Roanoke, VA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think we all agree that we want to win the cup, I guess it's how much you value playing well versus winning it all. To carry the 1 winner, 20 losers argument ad absurdam, unless you won the World Club Championship, your club is a loser. So, sorry, all you super clubs, only Real is a winner this year.
     
  4. soccertim

    soccertim Member

    Mar 29, 2001
    Mass
    We'll see how Juan's arrival changes things, but I'd be tempted to put a team with players like Twellman, Joseph, Dempsey, Ralston and Noonan in their primes above this group. If the standard for player evaluation is "better than Pat Phelan is good enough" then we're in good shape. Caldwell's relatively on the level of a healthy Dorman, which is a step (or more) below Dorman's level when he left the Revs years ago. What happens if we got a better player and plugged him into Caldwell's spot? Does that take pressure off the defense? Does it free up Jones for more forward runs when we get the ball? Am I alone in the assumption that getting such a player might improve the team?
     
  5. RevsLiverpool

    RevsLiverpool Member+

    Nov 12, 2005
    Boston
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Well I can see why you'd take it to an extreme, but really my point is winning your league is a successful year.
    Win a trophy and it's also a successful year. You don't have to win the Club World Cup to have a successful year.

    For example, Liverpool got back in the Champions League so they achieved that objective but of course fell short in the league and their various tournaments. I'm not satisfied. Arsenal won the FA Cup and ended their trophy drought - a degree of success even if they didn't win their league. City had a successful season by winning the league even if they fell short in their European objectives. DC United was an abject failure in the league in 2011 but won the USOC and got in the CL, so their miserable league season had an overall degree of success. So yes, you can have a successful year as long as you win something meaningful.

    I just don't see the point in embracing a loser mentality and celebrating a second place, trophy-less season which both of my clubs achieved in their league last year. Put another way, if the revs make MLS Cup for the next 10 years straight and lose every one, I won't be satisfied.
     
  6. Crooked

    Crooked Member+

    May 1, 2005
    London
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    In the 2006 MLS Cup our lineup was:

    New England Revolution -- Matt Reis, Jay Heaps, Avery John, Michael Parkhurst, Andy Dorman (Clint Dempsey 62), Joe Franchino (Khano Smith 53), Daniel Hernandez (Jeff Larentowicz 111), Shalrie Joseph, Steve Ralston, Pat Noonan, Taylor Twellman.
    Substitutes Not Used: Doug Warren, Jose Manuel Abundis, Jose Cancela, James Riley.

    Sorry, but our current roster isn't sniffing that.
     
  7. VTSoccerFan

    VTSoccerFan Member+

    New England Revolution, Vermont Catamounts
    United States
    Jun 28, 2002
    Cary, NC
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    No, I completely agree. Especially for the Jones, Dorman, and Caldwell DM role on the depth chart. Andy will be 33 in May, Jones might be gone next season, and Caldwell will be 24 in March. It would be nice to have a Dorman caliber of player at at 27 right now in this role.

    Caldwell could easily be the only player on the roster for this role next season. We could address this this season. Depth and competition are good things to have. Continuity is also good. Personnel planning for today and the future is a good thing. The Revs need to find the right balance for these things. Maybe they have, but I would like to see more upgrades in the top third of the depth chart or at least see the competition and scouting ability that comes with attempting to make these upgrades.
     
  8. NFLPatriot

    NFLPatriot Member+

    Jun 25, 2002
    Foxboro, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
  9. a517dogg

    a517dogg Member+

    Oct 30, 2005
    Rochester, NY
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    that's one reason I was surprised DM Alec Sundly was let go after last season. By all reports he did very well in Rochester, and I remember when we drafted him Heaps said he thought we got 1st round talent in the 2nd round.
     
  10. Minutemanii

    Minutemanii Member+

    Dec 29, 2005
    Abington MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
  11. Soccer Doc

    Soccer Doc Member+

    Nov 30, 2001
    Keene, NH
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    My take was both were less interested in winning the Desert Cup and a lot more interested in the real work of preseason.
     
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  12. SuperRevsGooner

    Aug 17, 2007
    Boulder CO (transplanted New Englander)
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    It's not about the names, it's about context.KickTV has the full '06 final on YouTube, just watch the quality of that game and tell me that the team then played better than the team now. Matt is obv. better than Bobby, Jay was perhaps a slight upgrade over Farrell (big upgrade over Alston), but does anyone else remember how frustrating Jay used to be sometimes? Parky and JoGo are on the same level IMO, especially when we were playing with 3 in the back. Avery John, just no. Dorman was great, Clint was great, Joe was CRAP (come on, he'd be a bench player at best today), Khano was great when we was running stright up the flank up till the point where he'd have to distribute, when the ball would invariably be crossed over everyone or go out for a goal kick. Danny was a bit player for a lot of that season, Jeff in his prime was amazing (I'd love to see a JLaw and JJ midfield duo back in his prime), Shalrie was good but JJ is better, Steve was amazing, Pat was solid (Nguyen is better) and TT was TT.

    I'd say on the raw skills front they'd match up well, but the point I guess I was trying to make is since our MLS 1.0 days (which that 06 squad was the culmination of), we haven't had a team this loaded and primed for success. I'm not saying the '06 squad was bad, I'm just saying that IMO the quality of the league has at least tripled since then (if such a thing is quantifiable) and in every position we have guys who can step up and contribute in a big way, which makes this team pretty beastly.
     
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  13. SuperRevsGooner

    Aug 17, 2007
    Boulder CO (transplanted New Englander)
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'm totally down for any improvement we can make, but Caldwell really impressed in the second half of the year and I think he's poised for a breakout year. Also, the market for DMs right now is fairly slim...we have the best in the league in JJ, then there's Beckerman and Trapp and Cheyrou, then there are a whole bunch of players that we'd probably have to pay much better than Scott, which prevents us from improving the team elsewhere. I'd rather see us pick up a real, bonafide right back, personally. But Caldwell can definitely be improved upon! It's just a matter of what is a bigger question mark, and Jay seems pretty sure that Scott's the DM of the future for the club.
     
  14. patfan1

    patfan1 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Aug 19, 1999
    Nashua, NH
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
     
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  15. rkupp

    rkupp Member+

    Jan 3, 2001
    No, it doesn't. Heaps is an optimistic, enthusiastic coach and he's going to try to maximize whatever he has available. That has no bearing on whether he'd like to see more options or not.
    Agree we should have brought in another starter, but there's not reason to think that Heaps and Burns don't want to find a defender. In fact, Burns has said exactly that (and that was after acquiring Hall).

    And, before we all go denigrating Hall's potential (I'll admit to not having watched him very closely in the past), Heaps did manage to get a lot more out of Nguyen and Bunbury than almost anyone expected. And the same, probably to a lesser extent, with Davies and Kobayashi.

    Let's see what he can do with Hall before we decide the the player of 2015 is no better than what he's shown up to this point.
    I think that's kind of the point (that he's under-rated here). How many left-backs in MLS "beat people off the dribble"? And, since when is speed a requirement for a LB? There are many ways to skin a cat.

    Besides, rating a defender's individual skills is really besides the point (Rusty Pierce was a terrific 1v1 defender!). What really matters is how well a defender functions as part of a defensive unit. And, in that vein, I think Tierney does pretty well.

    Offensively, he adds some things (reliable passer, good crosser, good on free kicks, low turnover rate) more than others (1v1 attacking, shooting, penetrating). On total, probably about average offensive contribution for an MLS LB.
    Well said.

    Stability and cohesion have always been undervalued in MLS. Every season we see the teams making big changes and assume they'll be much improved. But, this is a team game and the more fluidly and instinctively a team plays together, generally the more successful they'll be. And that's something that takes more than a preseason or even a whole season to develop.
    That's certainly an impressive lineup (though, not without it's weak points: Avery John, Heaps, Franchy - which really crippled their ability to work the ball out of the back), this team is built much the same way.

    This team's defense has it's weak points, but when they get the ball to the front 5-6, there's an awful lot of quality attacking ability. That team was the same way. They really struggled in their own end - and teams tried to keep them pinned back - but when they did get forward, they kept the ball well, worked it around and were able to attack from many angles.

    I think if you compare the teams vs. their competition, they'd come out pretty similar. And, the competition, as pointed out, is a lot better now.
    Sometimes it's by the player's request (maybe he seems Jones, Caldwell, Dorman and Kobayashi in his way and thinks his chances would be better elsewhere?). Otherwise, I'm also surprised he wasn't invited back.
     
  16. RevsLiverpool

    RevsLiverpool Member+

    Nov 12, 2005
    Boston
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    It doesn't matter whether he'd like to see more options, it's whether the FO could get any more options in before the season starts. I will bet you an overpriced Gillette Stadium beer of your choosing that the revs don't get another defender in before the start of the season. The revs are going to war with what they have.

    That's exactly my point in bold - Heaps wants to see what he can do with Hall, meaning he's realistically done shopping for a defender and is ready to give him minutes. It was the same last year when they acquired Bunbury, they were all high on him heading into the season and he started right out of the gate as a striker, which ended up being a mistake. Hall will at least compete for a starting spot and may even start right out of the gate. It's how this team works.
     
  17. soccertim

    soccertim Member

    Mar 29, 2001
    Mass
    Tierney frequently plays wide mid, that's where the "can't beat people off the dribble and doesn't have much speed" come into play. And Pierce was a much better 1v1 defender, much better team defender, much better at pretty much anything on defense than Teirney, who's pretty weak on D. Couple that with his about average offensive contribution on offense (something we agree on) and you don't really have an under-rated player. Probably the opposite.
     
  18. rkane1226

    rkane1226 Member+

    Apr 9, 2000
    Club:
    Stade Brestois 29
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Tierney is this era's Franchino. I like Tierney the person better and would rate him higher on DFKs. Franchino at least remembered he had a right foot. As left backs, there is an argument that they belong. Lefty's with better talent wind up in higher paying leagues; they are relatively rare. I don't understand either at midfield.

    Do you really get the sense that, in general, people (NNNs I guess) are asking the REVs to make BIG changes? My sense is people more or less applaud the signing of JA, expect the majority of the starting 11 to be the same as last year and successful too. The change at D is almost forced upon us (Soares chose to leave). Why not look to upgrade the position a little?

    If I offered that I am perplexed by the the apparent inability to find quality trialists to to come into camp and compete for the open roster positions, that would not be the same as saying I expect wholesale or BIG changes. I know they can bring in trialists at other times but this seems like the time of year where they could spare the time to give them a look and some scrimmage or DDC minutes.
     
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  19. Crooked

    Crooked Member+

    May 1, 2005
    London
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    You're misremembering. That 2006 lead the league in goals against, playing a 3-5-2 none the less. They were a complete team; the total package.
     
  20. SuperRevsGooner

    Aug 17, 2007
    Boulder CO (transplanted New Englander)
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    They also frequently got burned on the break by quick teams, and played an "over the top" style of soccer where the strategy was to go to TT first, Pat second and if they can't take a shot they'll push wide to Demps. I remember that team well, and the reason they lost that Final that year was because they got burned on the break and scored on by Ching. They were a great team, possibly the best from that era, but I still think that the '15 Revs would probably win in a matchup between the two. Not because they're that much better, but because they finally have a system that allows for buildup and possession, not just getting it to the guy at the end.
     
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  21. a517dogg

    a517dogg Member+

    Oct 30, 2005
    Rochester, NY
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    the reason they lost is because a desperation cross took a random deflection off the side of Avery John's head and landed in front of Ching. It was bad luck, not some inherent deficiency in the team.
     
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  22. Crooked

    Crooked Member+

    May 1, 2005
    London
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I disagree with pretty much the entire sentiment of your post, but really wanted to call out this comment which is pretty absurd IMO. We didn't get burned by Ching on the break; we scored a goal that we thought won us the Cup and then completely lost our heads.

    *Edit: as @a517dogg stated above, it wasn't even a counterattack that broke us. It was bad luck.
     
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  23. ToMhIlL

    ToMhIlL Member+

    Feb 18, 1999
    Boxborough, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yeah, it was the soccer equivalent of having the ball on the 2-yard line at the end of the game, and getting intercepted just when you thought you had the game won.
     
  24. RevsLiverpool

    RevsLiverpool Member+

    Nov 12, 2005
    Boston
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Bad luck was involved sure - but how did the ball get there and how did Ching become free? It's more than bad luck - poor defensive positioning on the play by Heaps. Ching was in the right place at the right time but was left virtually unmarked in front of goal.

    I love that 2006 team too - but a championship caliber team knows it's MOST vulnerable immediately after a goal and keeps its composure after scoring rather than loses its collective head. So yes, there were deficiencies.
     
  25. burud111

    burud111 Member

    Jul 20, 2007
    Connecticut
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    REVOLUTION 2015 Preseason Competitive Minutes Tally
    REVS 2, REAL SALT LAKE 1
    REVS 0, VANCOUVER 2
    REVS 0, REAL SALT LAKE 1 (*-Unsigned)
    155 - Jeremy Hall
    150 - Donnie Smith
    145 - Sean Okoli (1 GOAL)
    *145 - Marco Fenelus
    *145 - Tyler Rudy
    *145 - Timi Mulgrew
    (1 ASSIST)
    140 - Steve Neumann
    130 - Bobby Shuttleworth (0.69 GA/90)
    130 - Brad Knighton (2.08 GA/90)
    130 - Chris Tierney
    130 - Jose Goncalves
    130 - Andrew Farrell
    *130 - London Woodberry
    115 - Teal Bunbury
    115 - Andy Dorman
    115 - Kelyn Rowe
    105 - Daigo Kobayashi
    100 - Charlie Davies (1 GOAL)
    85 - Scott Caldwell
    85 - Darrius Barnes (1 gm. injured)
    *85 - Jacob Van Compernolle
    *85 - Yuzo Tashiro
    (1 ASSIST)
    49 - Juan Agudelo (1 gm. lack of fitness)
    45 - Kevin Alston (2 gms. injured)
    45 - Diego Fagundez (2 gms. with Uruguay U20s)
    *26 - Zachary Herivaux
    0 - Lee Nguyen (2 gms. with USMNT, 1 gm. lack of fitness)
    0 - Jermaine Jones (2 gms. with USMNT, 1 gm. injured)
    0 - Jerry Bengtson (on loan)
     

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