Revolution

Revolution defender Jalil Anibaba selected by Nashville SC in MLS Expansion Draft

Revolution defender Jalil Anibaba selected by Nashville SC in MLS Expansion Draft

New England Revolution defender Jalil Anibaba is on the move. 

Anibaba was selected by Nashville SC with their third pick in the MLS Expansion draft Tuesday night. The Revs will receive $50,000 in General Allocation Money to compensate for the loss of the 31-year-old.

In a Boston twist, it was Red Sox All-Star outfielder Mookie Betts, who also could be leaving the area this winter, announcing the new team's selections. Betts is from Nashville.

Nashville SC and Inter Miami CF will begin play in MLS next season and began filling their rosters in the draft Tuesday.  

In two seasons with the Revolution, Anibaba tallied one goal and three assists through 53 games played. 

Before joining New England, he played for the Chicago Fire (2011-13), Seattle Sounders (2014), Sporting Kansas City (2015) and the Houston Dynamo (2016-17). 

Revolution president Brian Billelo had some nice things to say about the defender following his pickup by Nashville. 

Anibaba's departure comes after the Revolution re-signed defenders DeJuan Jones and Brandon Bye while also adding left back Alexander Buttner and 16-year-old midfielder Damian Rivera. 

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Bruce Arena: 'The new training facility is great'

Bruce Arena: 'The new training facility is great'

This offseason, the New England Revolution unveiled a new, state-of-the-art trainer center.

The $35 million facility spans 68 acres and includes three full-size grass fields for practice, a gym featuring weight training equipment, a hydrotherapy room with three pools, and so much more.

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And so far, the Revs are really enjoying their new digs.

"The new training facility is great," Revs head coach and sporting director Bruce Arena said in a recent interview. "It's upgraded the commitment to the club, and I think the players sense that. They come to work every day with a smile on their face.

"They're highly motivated so we think the new facility is outstanding."

It's good news that the Revs are enjoying their new facility and it's unsurprising that they're so motivated by it. They're coming off one of their most successful seasons in recent years under Arena's direction, so they should only get better moving forward.

The Revs preseason begins on Monday, Feb. 10 when they travel to take on the LA Galaxy. Their regular-season MLS debut will take place on Saturday, Feb. 29 on the road against the Montreal Impact.

The Michael Holley Podcast: Bruce Arena on why he nearly turned down Revolution job

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The Michael Holley Podcast: Bruce Arena on why he nearly turned down Revolution job

Bruce Arena led the New England Revolution to their first playoff appearance since 2015 after taking over a team that had the worst record in MLS when he was hired in May. 

That turnaround under Arena nearly didn't happen because, as the former US men's national team and veteran MLS coach told Michael Holley on the latest edition of The Michael Holley Podcast, he was initially reluctant to take the job.

"Believe it or not, I wasn't going to take the job here," Arena told Holley. "The Krafts just convinced me. To me, it was an interesting project, it was a unique opportunity. 

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"I said, 'The New England Revolution? What have they done lately? Are they really committed to winning? I said [to team owners Robert and Jonathan Kraft], 'If you're committed to winning, I'm willing to listen. I listened a little bit but didn't listen that well...They kept coming back and over a couple of days I was persuaded to come here."

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Arena said the Krafts' commitment to the Revs that convinced him to come to New England has him hopeful for sustained success here. 

"I've had a lot of situations where I had teams near the top and they're demanding to win championships right away. I thought this would be a great challenge to build a team toward a championship," Arena said. "The Krafts have been great for me. They're building a great training facility. We're eventually going to have a [soccer-only] stadium in the city [of Boston]. They convinced me that they were going to support this team and we were going to make it happen in Boston."

Arena said the key to the turnaround last season was building confidence in his players and the playoff appearance has raised the stakes for this season. 

"Certainly, we had to get confidence back in the players. I felt in a short period of time, I thought the talent level was better than most people thought...I think we're putting together a good team, both on and off the field. We're going to turn up the expectations this year and try and be a better team than what we were last year."

And bout that stadium, Arena said, "I think it's going to happen during my tenure. I'm that confident about it. My wife and I are going to be moving to a condominium in the seaport. So, I'm hopeful that one day, I'm going to say, maybe I'll kiss my wife goodbye and I'm going to travel real quickly to the stadium for our match...I know it's a personal goal for Robert and Jonathan Kraft and they're working real hard to get that done." 

"I think in the near future we can get some news about the potential for a stadium here."

Arena also touches on his friendship with Patriots receiver Julian Edelman and ex-Pats receiver Danny Amendola, his New York roots and fandom of a certain baseball team to the south being put the test, the changing impact of MLS and soccer in the US, his passion for coaching and more in this edition of the podcast, presented by Night Shift Brewing.