The New England Revolution pressed and probed, but couldn’t find the elusive and needed goal as the hosts drew heavily-rotated Real Salt Lake, 0-0, Saturday night at Gillette Stadium.
The first scoring chance came early with Carles Gil cutting the ball onto his left foot and putting a curling effort that skimmed off the crossbar and out in the 7th minute.
Gustavo Bou was lively off the substitute’s bench. He was set up nicely in the box from a Juan Agudelo layoff. But his 68th-minute shot was blocked well. Ten minutes later, Bou sent a driven ball in front of the goal that deflected out for a goal kick.
After DeJuan Jones came close to the winner, Brandon Bye latched onto a Gil free kick and headed off the frame in the 85th minute. Wilfried Zahibo’s rebound was blocked before RSL was able to clear.
Damir Kreilach had Real Salt Lake’s best chance with a dangerous free kick in the 75th minute, but it was blocked by the New England wall.
- THE BIG PICTURE: Birthday boy Bruce Arena labeled the game a must win. He wasn’t pleased at halftime and surely the same was true at the full-time whistle. The Revs, pending Orlando City SC’s result against the Houston Dynamo, are still two points above the playoff line in the East. Freddy Juarez rolled the dice with a heavy rotation ahead of a vital home game Wednesday at Rio Tinto Stadium against the LA Galaxy and it paid off.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: This was the wildest sequence of a second-half heavily tilted in the Revs’ attacking third.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Bou picked up a knock during the week at training and was limited to a substitute’s appearance, but when he came on the Argentine Designated Player came on he was a threat with every touch. He probably deserved a late winner, but he skied it into Patriot Place.
- NE: Wednesday, September 25 at Portland Timbers (10:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in US, on DAZN in Canada)
- RSL: Wednesday, September 25 vs. LA Galaxy (9:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in US, on DAZN in Canada)