Revolution

Revs close season with draw

567944.jpg

Revs close season with draw

TORONTO Monsef Zerka and Milton Caraglio scored either side of halftime and Benny Feilhaber assisted on both goals as the New England Revolution closed out its 2011 season with a 2-2 draw in a Saturday afternoon meeting with Toronto FC at BMO Field.

It was the final game of the season for both the Revs (5-16-13, 28 pts.) and TFC (6-13-15, 33 pts.), neither of which qualified for the 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs.

Nick Soolsma gave Toronto an early lead with the games opening goal in the 20thminute before the Revs jumped ahead courtesy of strikes from Zerka (41stminute) and Caraglio (46thminute). New England carried its advantage into the late stages, but Danny Koevermans scored his eighth goal of the season in the 83rdminute to pull the hosts level and provide the final score line.

There was just one change to the Revolution lineup which suffered a 3-0 loss to the Columbus Crew last weekend at Gillette Stadium. Danish forward Rajko Lekic who missed three games with a sprained left ankle returned to the starting lineup for the first time since Sept. 16 in place of the injured Diego Fagundez (concussion).

New England started on the front foot and almost made an early breakthrough in the 10thminute. Feilhabers in-swinging cross from the left wing was missed by the cutting Zerka, but the attempt ended up on frame and forced a lunging save out of TFC goalkeeper Milos Kocic.

It was Toronto which opened the scoring, however, as Soolsma notched his third goal of the season to put the hosts up 1-0 in the 20thminute. Koevermans was played into the left side of the box, where he delivered a low cross to the near post for Soolsma, who arrived ahead of his marker and finished with a first-time shot.

Soolsma almost had a second just four minutes later when he burst into the right side of the box, but New England goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth came up with a big save to deny the rising effort.

Zerka ultimately pulled the Revs level before halftime, recording his second goal of the season in the 41stminute to knot the score at 1-1. Feilhaber was the provider from a set piece as his corner kick was whipped to the near post, where Zerka sent a flashing header off the hands of Kocic and just under the crossbar.

Feilhaber was the setup man again just moments after the second half began as the Revs took a 2-1 lead in the 46thminute. The U.S. National Team midfielder capitalized on a turnover and worked his way down the right wing before playing a low cross to the back post, where Caraglio slid in to finish into the empty net.

The Revs almost found a third in the 67thminute when Zerka unleashed a volley from 25 yards out, but Kocic was at full stretch to push the shot away from danger. Kocic then repeated the feat in the 76thminute, kicking away Zerkas low effort.

TFCs goalkeepers heroics proved vital in the 83rdminute, when Koevermans popped up to score the equalizer. Torsten Frings sprayed the ball wide to substitute Eric Avila, who whipped an in-swinging cross into the box from the left wing. The service found its way through the box to Koevermans, who tapped home from close range at the back post.

Diego Fagundez scores twice, Revolution top 10-man NYC 2-1

Diego Fagundez scores twice, Revolution top 10-man NYC 2-1

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - Diego Fagundez scored two goals in the second half and the New England Revolution beat 10-man New York City FC 2-1 on Sunday.

New England (12-15-6) set a club record with 12 wins at home. NYC (16-9-8) had several possibilities to clinch a bye in the playoffs but needed at least a draw.

Fagundez opened the scoring in the 51st minute and made it 2-0 in the second minute of stoppage time with his sixth goal of the season. Andrew Farrell set up the first goal by dribbling into the area and finding Fagundez at the top of the box. It was his first goal since June 3. Fagundez's next goal was a tap-in after his breakaway shot was knocked back to him.

Khiry Shelton scored for NYC in the third minute of extra time by getting past the defense for a long ball and heading it in.

NYC's Jack Harrison was shown a straight red card in the 26th minute for a late challenge on Teal Bunbury. It was Harrison's first red card of his professional career and he'll miss the regular-season finale against Columbus Crew SC next weekend.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

United States fails to qualify for World Cup for first time since 1986

usa_trinidad_and_tobago_soccer_101017.jpg

United States fails to qualify for World Cup for first time since 1986

COUVA, Trinidad — The United States has been eliminated from World Cup contention, a shocking loss at Trinidad ending the Americans’ streak of seven straight appearances at soccer’s showcase.

Twenty-eight years after a stunning victory at Trinidad put the Americans back in the World Cup after a four-decade absence, their chances for next year’s tournament in Russia ended on this island nation off the coast of Venezuela.

Trinidad and Tobago scored a pair of first-half goals, and the United States was eliminated with a 2-1 defeat Tuesday night — the first time missing the World Cup since 1986.

The U.S. entered its final qualifier with a berth uncertain for the first time since 1989. Home losses to Mexico last November and Costa Rica left the Americans little margin for error.

The 28th-ranked Americans needed merely a tie against 99th-ranked Trinidad, which lost its sixth straight qualifier last week. But the defeat — coupled with Honduras’ come-from-behind 3-2 win over Mexico and Panama’s 2-1 victory over Costa Rica on Ramon Torres’ 88th-minute goal — dropped the Americans from third place into fifth in the six-nation final round of the North and Central American and Caribbean region.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE