Revolution searching for more scoring, motivation


Revolution searching for more scoring, motivation

By DannyPicard

FOXBORO Steve Nicol wasnt at Gillette Stadium on Thursday morning. The New England Revolution coach was on his way back from Europe as his team practiced under the watchful eye of assistant coach Steve Myles.

Myles playfully described Nicols trip as a holiday. But even he knew that wasnt true.

Nicol wasnt playing games when he called out the Revolution following Saturday nights 0-0 draw with the Colorado Rapids. He meant what he said when he threatened to go out and acquire another attacking midfielder or forward.

Threat may seem like a strong word, but Nicol knew what he was doing. And Revolution players knew why he was in Europe. He was scouting, in preparation to make a move before this summers transfer window closed.

Its a move that Nicol said the team needed to make after being shut-out for the second straight game on Saturday. And as serious as he was, perhaps he also had another plan: motivation.

If they arent, then they shouldnt be in the game, said Myles, when asked if Nicols postgame message motivated his players to step it up, offensively. If theyre taking notice of what people are saying, then at the end of the day, youve got to be looking over your shoulder, saying, Well, Im going to make sure, if they do bring anybody in, he aint gonna be taking my spot.

The fellas should be looking over their shoulder and saying, Im going to be making sure Im doing my best, to keep my position. And if everybody does that, obviously the whole level of the team rises.

Thats part of the plan, at least. The other part of the plan, is to actually acquire another creative piece, in the absence of Marko Perovic, who didnt train this week because of a left knee injury.

Without him, Revs have struggled in the final third.

Marko is definitely our most creative player, said Revolution captain Shalrie Joseph after Thursdays practice. Not having him out there has definitely been a huge loss to everybody.

Hes disappointed, were disappointed, said Myles. Hes one of our creative players. So anytime youre missing that type of quality on the team, obviously it affects the team.

But, in saying that, if somebodys out, then its somebody elses fortune to take his place, and make sure they do the right things. We cant dwell on that. Weve got to get on with it, get on with what weve got, and try to do the best we can with what weve got.

Nicols message after Saturdays scoreless draw was directed towards everybody. But even more so to Joseph and recently acquired attacking midfielder Benny Feilhaber.

Those are the two players that need to step up. Both had golden opportunities on Saturday. Joseph was robbed of a header with a fantastic hand save. Feilhaber hit the cross bar.

Tough breaks for both players, sure. But its that inability to finish in the final third, that has haunted the Revolution this season.

Both heard Nicols latest message. Both are motivated to take charge in Perovics absence.

I think me and Benny are being a little bit more offensive minded, and getting on the ball, said Joseph. Weve got to find ways to create more chances and be a little bit more deceptive on the ball, especially in the second third.

We take it as a personal challenge. Coach was just calling us to step up as being team leaders.

Guys have to realize, its a business, said Joseph. Theres 11 spots to start out there, and youve got to work hard to be in the first 11. So if you want to keep your job, youve got to put the work in, week in and week out. Its important that, whoever he brings in, comes in and adds to our team. We cant just bring in somebody thats not good enough to make our team better.

Danny Picard is onTwitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard.

Revolution introduce Brad Friedel as coach


Revolution introduce Brad Friedel as coach

New Revolution coach Brad Friedel was introduced to the media at Gillette Stadium on Monday and promised his "obsession with winning" will filter down to the rest of the organization.

“We have a lot of work ahead but we do have a lot of good players here, a lot of good pieces to this club,” Friedel said.  “One thing we can guarantee you — because you never want to guarantee too much in sport — is that you will get 100 percent commitment from myself and staff, as well as the players.

“And we’re going to be, hopefully, get to the obsession that I have with winning. And we’ll work our best to try and get those wins on the board that we can.”

Since retiring as a player, Friedel, a former UMNT goalkeeper who spent most of his career in Europe and the Premier League, has coached the US U-19 team and worked as a soccer analyst for FOX Sports. He's the eighth coach in the MLS franchise's 22-year history. He replaces Jay Heaps, the Revs' second-longest serving coach who led New England to playoff appearances from 2013-15, including an MLS Cup Final appearance in 2014. 

Friedel said it won't be difficult to adjust to coaching in the MLS after a long career in Europe. 

“That won't be hard to adjust to at all," Freidel said. "Not every team over in Europe or England, for that matter, has these enormous budgets. Working at clubs like Blackburn as a player, but then at Tottenham, I know it's a big club, but they work under a strict budget at Tottenham. You learn to work under whatever restrictions or not there may or may not be... 

"Whatever budget is given to us, we will work with. I think what's really important is the mentality of the players. Fans and players are usually the two most important things at every single club. Us as a staff, we're employed to try to make those players better. So, whatever players are in front of us, that's going to be our focus – on getting a team environment, a winning environment, and an environment where every player wants to work hard. It doesn't really matter where your budgets are.”

Friedel said he likes the potential on the Revs roster. 

"I think there's a lot of potential within the group. We're not going to go into details at the first press conference obviously with the squad itself. We have a lot of meetings ahead with that, but there's a lot of potential in the group... 

"This is not a team that is in disarray, that's for sure. I think there needs to be little tweaks to it, and then my staff and I need to go in and try to mold the team and get the confidence back. I think if you see – you can look at stats, stats don't lie – over 60 goals conceded is too much and that's something we'll need to address. But, we know what we need to address and we'll work hard to address those issues."

Report: Revolution hire Brad Friedel as new head coach


Report: Revolution hire Brad Friedel as new head coach

The New England Revolution have hired Brad Friedel as their new head coach, according to Ives Galarcep of

Friedel, 46, played goalkeeper for the Columbus Crew in 1996 and 1997 before spending 18 years in the Premier League and was the starting keeper for the United States National Team in the 2002 World Cup. He has spent the last two years coaching the United States Under-19 National Team.

The Revs fired head coach Jay Heaps and September and Tom Soehn filled in as interim head coach for the remainder of the season.