It was a huge reality check for the New England Revolution in their last outing. Whilst they held on against LAFC for large parts of the game, Steve Cherundolo’s side ended up running away with it. Next for the Revs is a clash with Nashville SC at Gillette Stadium tonight.
Gillette Stadium is the Location For This Weekend’s Clash
Will Carles Gil Watch on From the Sidelines Again?
The biggest omission from the starting XI last week was Carles Gil, with the Spaniard starting on the bench. Bruce Arena confirmed the status of his captain on Thursday, saying that “Carles didn’t train today, we’re still working on getting him fully healthy.” It remains to be seen whether or not he will feature at Gillette Stadium this evening.
Gustavo Bou picked up his first start of the season against LAFC in the place of Gil. It was a very fluid frontline in which the Argentine, Dylan Borrero and Bobby Wood brought a lot of different assets to the table. Arena answered questions as to the positioning of Borrero as follows: “regardless of how he looked on a piece of paper, he plays in the wide areas of the field and that’s where he’s more comfortable.”
I’m hearing that Carles Gil suffered a hamstring injury. His status for Saturday is questionable. #NERevs
— Seth (@SethMan31) March 15, 2023
Going further back on the field and the Revolution head coach confirmed that “Andrew Farrell has been practicing.” In his absence, former Nashville man Dave Romney has been the starting centre-back alongside Henry Kessler.
Romney said that he’s “excited to play Nashville again”, whilst also singing the praises of the team and manager who he worked with closely for two years. In his words, “any emphasis of a Gary [Smith] team is being extremely sound structurally, being tough to break down, two blocks of four, having your forwards working really hard as well and then kind of beating them up on the counter.”
Read More: Nashville SC Defender Dave Romney Reunites with Bruce Arena in New England
Nashville SC’s Second-Ever League Visit to Gillette Stadium
It is easy to forget, given their early success in Major League Soccer, that Nashville SC are still in their formative years. The only other visit to Gillette Stadium for the Tennessee team ended goalless. A trio of Revolution players in that side have made their step-up to Europe in the form of Matt Turner, Tajon Buchanan and Adam Buksa.
Meanwhile, Hany Mukhtar was on the bench for Nashville prior to him becoming an MVP calibre player and Teal Bunbury was amongst the New England substitutes. He is a legendary player in Boston and now dons the yellow jersey of Nashville. Arena holds him in very high regard and was happy to speak on it; “I have a lot of respect for him and he’s a good person.”
After 231 appearances for @NERevolution from 2014-2021, @TealBunB returns to Gillette Stadium as a visitor for the first time. @CSpire | #EveryoneN pic.twitter.com/rTRbU2Tt0T
— Nashville SC (@NashvilleSC) March 17, 2023
The only other league meeting between these two went the way of Nashville at Nissan Stadium, the home of the Tennessee Titans. Goals from CJ Sapong and Alex Muyl either side of half-time secured the three points for Gary Smith’s side, one of just five defeats in the Revolution’s record breaking season.
Nashville “are very sound fundamentally as a defense and then they are dangerous if you let them get in space on a counter-attack” in the words of Romney. It will be a tough test for the Revs at Gillette Stadium this evening, as they look to right the wrongs of that LAFC defeat.
Featured image credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports on March 12, 2023.