The Revolution are back.
After last season saw the additions of Bruce Arena, Carles Gil, Gustavo Bou and me, expectations should be high. As in title contender high.
Last year it was about getting the right people here. This summer was about adding to that. We'll start to see the results Saturday.
Let me, a soccer genius, tell you why you should get in on this team from the beginning.
THEY HAVE THREE DESIGNATED PLAYERS
A designated player is a player to whom the salary cap does not apply. In other words, it's a player you pay a ton because he's a star.
Examples of designated players over the years have included David Beckham and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
You're allowed to have three designated players. Some teams don't have any. Some have one or two. After signing Adam Buksa this offseason to join Gil and Bou, the Revolution have three. This team didn't used to spend, but they do now.
Let's spend a sec on each of these guys, then I'll make fun of NYCFC.
THE DESIGNATED PLAYERS
Gil joined the team last season and was named MLS Newcomer of the Year. He doesn't score a lot, but he rules. He's hurt right now but isn't expected to be out long.
Bou (a.k.a. La Pantera; this is an actual nickname and not one of my silly things, so people will know what you're talking about if you call him that) was signed during the season last year and was awesome out of the gate. The 30-year-old forward had nine goals in 14 regular-season games for the Revs last season. He's my favorite player. I met him one time and he was super nice.
The Revs signed Buksa from Poland this offseason. Charlie Davies told me this week he's a "goal-scorer" with "aerial prowess." Sounds incredible. Probably gonna score a crap-ton of goals.
THEY HAVE A TEAM NAME
NYCFC is probably feeling like a bunch of cool guys entering the season, but just a reminder: They don't have a team name.
If your team name is "Football Club," it means they didn't know what to call your stupid team. It's like naming a baby "Baby."
The Revolution have an actual name because they're adults.
THEY HAD A GOOD OFFSEASON
Buksa wasn't all the Revs added. They also went out and signed Alexander Büttner, who used to play for Manchester United.
The Revs brought back a couple guys who used to play for them in Kelyn Rowe and Seth Sinovic, while drafting Henry Kessler.
A FULL YEAR OF ARENA
If there's such thing as a "star coach," Arena is it.
The Revolution lost only five their final 24 games last year after Arena took over as head coach and sporting director midseason. He's now had an offseason to both supplement the roster, move the team into a new practice facility and prepare for an entire campaign.
HERE COMES MATT TURNER
Matt Turner is the Tim Thomas of hockey. Yes, he's a good story (undrafted out of Fairfield), but at some point people talk less about the story because all they can talk about is how good they are.
That's where I think we're at with Turner, who was excellent in net for the Revs down the stretch last season and ended up getting the call to the U.S. Men's National Team last month.
OTHER TEAMS TO FEAR
The Revolution are MLS Cup contenders, but they're not the favorites. LAFC, Atlanta United (who knocked them out of the playoffs last year) and defending champ Seattle are all ahead of them.
ESPN.com has the Revs seventh in its power rankings, calling New England "one of the toughest teams to play against this season."
Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Impact vs. Revolution, which begins Saturday at 3 p.m. followed by Revolution Postgame Live. You can also stream the game on the NBC Sports app.