In the Battle of the Kamaras, both Kei and Ola each scored a goal, but ultimately it was Kei's New England Revolution who got the win, 3-1, over Columbus Crew SC Saturday night in Foxborough, picking up three precious points that ended a three-game losing streak in league play and lifted them into a playoff position in the Eastern Conference standings.
The pre-match hype centered around Revolution striker Kei Kamara playing his first game against his former club since Columbus traded him to the Revolution just before the May 11 trade deadline. The trade had come on the heels of his critical post-match comments about teammate Federico Higuain following Crew SC's 4-4 draw against the Montreal Impact May 7. Kei had played all 90 minutes in all seven league games for the Revs since joining the team, and had scored two goals (both in the 3-2 loss to Montreal July 2), with no assists. Meanwhile, his replacement in Columbus, Ola Kamara (no relation) had scored seven goals in seven matches (six starts) since the trade.
New England got on the board early on a Lee Nguyen goal in the third minute, and doubled their lead in the 34th when Kei Kamara's centering pass was knocked in by Columbus midfielder Wil Trapp for an own goal. But just as the Revs looked to be dominating, Ola Kamara ran onto a pretty through ball from Tony Tchani and slipped a left-footed shot under New England goalkeeper Brad Knighton to stop the bleeding in the 42nd minute.
But Kei, who had been so active, yet unrewarded for most of the game, got his revenge on his old team in the 71st, when he capitalized on a defensive mixup between Columbus defendersChad Barson and Waylon Francis and ran onto a free ball in the box and scored his third goal in a New England shirt.
FOXBORO -- New England Revolution coach Brad Friedel has been named to the ballot for the National Soccer Hall of Fame Class of 2018 elections. In addition, general manager Michael Burns is one of nine former players eligible for election as a Veteran candidate.
Friedel is in his first year of eligibility after completing his playing career in 2014 as one of the most acclaimed American goalkeepers in history. In addition to earning 82 career caps and appearing in six FIFA World Cup matches, Friedel enjoyed a 17-year career in the English Premier League, where he made 310 consecutive starts in goal and ranks among the top 10 all-time with 132 clean sheets. He has won many individual honors over the years, including being named Major League Soccer goalkeeper of the year in 1997, English Premier League goalkeeper of the year in 2003, and the U.S. Soccer Federation’s men’s athlete of the year in 2002.
Burns, who played in 75 international matches for the USMNT between 1992 and 1998, remains on the ballot as a Veteran candidate. Now in his seventh season as General Manager of the Revolution, Burns was a member of the 1994 and 1998 FIFA World Cup squads, and competed in the 1992 Olympics Games. His club career was highlighted by a seven-year playing career in Major League Soccer from 1996-2002, where he made 75 total appearances for New England, San Jose, and Kansas City.
In addition, former Revolution players Taylor Twellman (2002-09) and Steve Ralston (2002-09) remain on the 2018 Player ballot.
Voting begins today and runs through Monday, March 26 for the Player, Veteran Player, and Builder categories. The results of voting will be announced at a later date, and the grand opening of the National Soccer Hall of Fame is set for the weekend of October 20-21, 2018.
FOXBORO - Chris Tierney scored on a free kick in the 93rd minute to give the Revolution a 2-1 victory over the Colorado Rapids in the Revs' home opener on Saturday at Gillette Stadium.
Wilfried Zahibo drew a foul against Niki Jackson to set up Tierney, whose left-footed shot went through with a deflection off Colorado's wall.
Jackson, who was making his MLS debut, tied it in the 66th minute for the Rapids. He raced behind the central defense on Johan Blomberg's diagonal cross and crossed in front of goalkeeper Matt Turner to get his head on it.
Diego Fagundez opened the scoring for the Revolution (1-1-0) in the 48th minute, settling Cristian Penilla's short cross with one touch and finishing a low shot into the middle of the goal.
© 2018 by The Associated Press.