Allston, Mass-The Revolution continued to roll on Wednesday night, defeating the New York Red Bulls 4-2 in the fourth round of the US Open Cup to advance to the quarterfinals where they will square off against DC United. A capacity crowd at Soldiers Field Stadium on the campus of Harvard University stood, sat, and squatted to watch the Revolution knockout the Red Bulls and extend their unbeaten run to seven games in all competitions.
It's the farthest the Revolution have made it in the US Open Cup since reaching the semifinals in 2008.
Revolution Head Coach Jay Heaps has a number of things to be happy about. For one, his team scored four goals. Kelyn Rowe was the offensive spearhead in the match, scoring twice against a formidable Red Bulls back line that included US national team defender Heath Pearce and MLS veterans Kosuke Kimura and Brandon Barklage.
"When he shoots in on goal, it's usually going in," said Heaps of Rowe. "He's got one of the best shots I've seen, right or left foot. He was fired up for tonight. Right from the open, his touch was on. His movement was good. His pressure was good. He had a nice night."
"Itís a lot about confidence," explained Rowe. "Iíve obviously grown in that aspect this year and itís something thatís bringing my game out fully: taking players on, taking shots, giving players opportunities to score, other than myself. So I think itís really grown in Boston into something good."
The Revolution also learned just how deep their roster really is. For one, many of the players continue to demonstrate their versatility. Against the Red Bulls, Kalifa Cisse, a natural midfielder, paired well with AJ Soares in defense. Meanwhile, Chad Barrett, normally a forward, helped the Revolution dominate in midfield by opening up space and setting up passing lanes.
Secondly, a deep roster is providing the Revolution with competition among the players on the roster. While the Revolution rested all of their starters ahead of a league match at Vancouver this Saturday, the team's back-ups did their part to earn the result. Andy Dorman bossed the midfield with Rowe and Barrett, earning his second consecuctive Open Cup start, while Darrius Barnes and Soares stayed one step ahead of New York's forwards for most of the evening in defense.
"There's going to be competition for every spot," acknowledged Heaps. "The best teams I've been on there's been competition. It's friendly competition. But when they get on a field like this and perform it makes the coaches have to make tough decisions."
After the game, Red Bulls Head Coach Mike Petke called the Revolution "a mediocre team." But the Revolution's recent run suggests that they are ready to assert themselves as one of the country's best teams.
"By the scorelines you see it yourself, we're one of the top teams in the country," said Rowe. "Not just with this game, but with league games as well. We're a team to be reckoned with."
If the Revolution can maintain their form, a quarterfinal match at DC, who have the league's worst overall and defensive record, shouldn't be too rocky a stepping stone to the semifinals. And with most of their starters rested and fresh for a tough match-up against Vancouver this weekend, the Revolution are positioned to compete for another positive league result on the road.
"We want to be able to keep going and right now, weíre on the streak where we havenít lost," finished Rowe. "Thatís a big thing for us right now, that streak of not losing, but we want to get that win. Three points on the road in Vancouver would be great for us."
The author is solely responsible for the content.
Translate this page
To our readers,
We've added a translation feature to the Corner Kicks blog to assist readers who may be more comfortable reading another language.
Google Translate is not perfect -- we're aware of that -- but it is quite good at getting the main points of the story across. We've successfully used it on The Big Picture, Boston.com's extremely popular world photography site. I'd be eager to hear your feedback on its use in Corner Kicks, in whatever language.
David Beard, Editor, Boston.com