Although a sloppy game overall, it was a flying start for the New England Revolution. The skill shown early from Gustavo Bou was vital to the Revolution’s kickstart within the first ten-minute interval of the match. The ball rolled through for Bou, and he was able to execute a perfect dummy, forcing Orlando’s Ruan to completely faceplant into the turf. Bou crossed to the back post for Adam Buksa, who redirected his twelfth goal of the season with the right foot.
Orlando City were getting outplayed, but found their equalizer against the run of play. Daryl Dike’s strength is widely known, even by former Virginia teammate Henry Kessler. But still, his strength was too much. He absolutely bullied Kessler inside the box, and got enough on his shot that Matt Turner probably should’ve kept out of his net, 1-1.
But, the Revolution attack is far too good to give up there. Tajon Buchanan’s pure quickness was back on display in this one, his ability to shift between defenders and take them on lead to the winning goal. The scissors move down the bi-line came before Buchanan served a low cross into the area of Adam Buksa. It was actually Rodrigo Schlegel, Orlando City center back, that got the final touch. Pedro Gallese was left with no chance as it flew into the top right corner.
The biggest moment of the game came in minute 74, with the clock winding down. Gillette Stadium’s 23,506 person attendance can probably be partially linked to the draw of world superstar Luis Nani. The former Manchester United and Portugal legend had substituted into the match a few minutes prior to Andrew Farrell conceding a penalty kick on the edge of the box. Turner saved Nani’s penalty in the playoffs last year, and he had no fear of getting scored on this time either. Using his research, he sat straight in the middle, and sure enough Nani hit the penalty right at Turner’s shoulder to keep the 2-1 lead.
The three points sets the New England Revolution’s all time points record, officially marking their best season as a franchise. The next step is getting the MLS version of that record as well within the next six games. Ten out of the possible eighteen available points would be enough to tie 2019 LAFC’s 72 points, the MLS record. It also strengthens the Eastern Conference lead to 18 points, as well as 16 in the Supporter’s Shield. New England will visit CF Montreal at Stade Saputo on Wednesday, before having about two and a half weeks off during the international break.
(Photo by Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)