May 21, 2016
By Adam Burrows
Revs falter late, fall to Dallas 4-2
New England Soccer News contributor
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Fabian Castillo capitalized on a New England Revolution defensive error in the 70th minute to break a closely matched deadlock and Tesho Akindele added a late clincher for his second goal of the night as FC Dallas came from behind to best the Revs by a 4-2 margin at Gillette Stadium Saturday for their league-best eighth win.
|Lee Nguyen had a goal and an assist for the Revs against FC Dallas on Saturday.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
The interconference opponents traded penalty kicks and set-piece aerial goals in an action-packed first half, as Lee Nguyen scored from the spot and notched his team-leading fourth assist on a Juan Agudelo goal, but Akindele also scored from the spot early and Atiba Harris equalized late in the half off a corner kick to send the game into the break all even.
Kellyn Acosta came off the bench to register two assists for the Hoops (8-4-2, 26 points), while defensive errors cost the Revs (2-4-7, 13 points) their first loss of the season at home in the middle match of a three-game homestand.
After making his MLS debut off the bench last week as the Revolution ended a six-game winless drought in Foxborough against Chicago, Sambinha, on loan from Sporting Lisbon, earned his first start alongside Andrew Farrell in central defense as Jose Goncalves dropped from the first eighteen with a chest injury and former Hoop Je-Vaughn Watson returned to his familiar right back post in his 100th career start.
Meanwhile veteran left back Chris Tierney returned to the lineup after missing four game with a hamstring injury suffered in the first half against DC United on April 23rd, and Kelyn Rowe, who made a spot start last week at right back, moved back into the midfield in place of Diego Fagundez.
With both teams coming off 2-0 home victories and playing their only contest of the regular season, the Revs got off on the wrong foot when Michael Barrios collected a pass behind the New England back line in the second minute and was upended by Bobby Shuttleworth as the Colombian striker crossed into the penalty box and beat the Rev ‘keeper to the ball.
After referee Silviu Petrescu pointed to the spot and flashed yellow at Shuttleworth, Akindele stepped up and buried the penalty in the right corner, but Barrios was forced to leave on a stretcher, replaced by Acosta.
The Revs struggled to get their attack on track until Nguyen found space off a touch from Kei Kamara in the fifteenth minute and drilled a rocket from distance that beat Hoops ‘keeper Chris Seitz but ricocheted off the crossbar.
Kamara then got his head on a floated cross from Tierney at the twenty-minute mark as New England started to gain the upper hand, but Seitz was able to snatch the arcing aerial effort from the Revolution’s recently acquired designated player.
The Revs got their well-earned equalizer in the 23rd minute after Gershon Koffie earned a free kick deep on the right. Nguyen sent a perfect dead ball delivery into the box, and Agudelo was able to squeeze between Dallas defenders Maynor Figueroa and Walter Zimmerman to direct a diving header inside the right post.
Three minutes later Nguyen gave the home side the lead, roofing a penalty kick down the middle after beating Victor Ulloa to a loose ball in the box, but Koffie was compelled to depart with a leg injury suffered on the earlier foul, giving way to Fagundez.
The Revolution lead lasted just ten minutes though as Harris drew the visitors level with a glancing header that deflected off Shuttleworth’s hand and inside the near post off an Acosta corner kick, the first time the Revs have conceded off a corner in 2016.
The burgeoning Nguyen-Kamara connection nearly produced a goal in first-half stoppage time when Nguyen chipped a perfect cross into the path of Kamara, but the 2015 Golden Boot runner-up fanned on an open header at the top of the six-yard box.
The second half started slowly but Agudelo nearly broke the deadlock at the hour mark on another set play, getting on the end of a Nguyen corner kick, but his downward directed header bounced over the crossbar.
Daigo Kobayashi came close soon after entering for Tierney, poking a half-volley just over the bar off a deft touch pass from Faundez, and then moments later a defensive blunder allowed FC Dallas to take the lead.
After a Farrell giveaway near the center circle, Carlos Gruezo popped a long pass over the Revolution back line that Sambinha couldn’t corral. Castillo pounced on the miscue and finished neatly under Shuttleworth for his third goal of the campaign.
Femi Hollinger-Janzen entered in the 75th minute for Agudelo as the Revs fought desperately to bring the game back on level terms while Hoops packed the defensive end, but it was Akindele who got the late goal, taking an Acosta pass as he streaked into the penalty area and slotting past Shuttleworth in the 90th minute.