I won't be doing a live blog of this match but I will post some thoughts at halftime, and if something really jumps out.
The first is the lineup, a week ago the talk was that it would be another match with many starters being rested but in typical Jason Kreis form, he is going for the points and will put out the top guys for this match.
RSL: Nick Rimando, Chris Wingert, Jamison Olave, Nat Borchers, Tony Beltran, Will Johnson, Kyle Beckerman, Javier Morales, Ned Grabavoy, Fabian Espindola, and Alvaro Saborio.
NE lineup: 4-4-2: Reis, Tierney, Barnes, Osei, Sinovic; Nyassi, Joseph, Phelan, Mansally; Stolica, Perovic
Both teams are going for the win and that should mean for exciting soccer, I will post all my updates after the jump:
RSL's bench will include; Kyle Reynish, Robbie Russell, Andy Williams, Nelson Gonzalez, Jean Alexandre, Pablo Campos, and Robbie Findley
New England can't even fill their bench due to injuries but will have: Shuttleworth, Smith, Griffiths, Schilawski, and Dube available with two empty spots. That is just rough.
Well we know that adjusting to playing on turf is tough and given the nature of strange passes, bounces doing strange things I can blame part of RSL's struggles in the first half on turf. That doesn't mean that you can blame all of it, clearly the Revolution know they can't match up one on one with RSL's players so we have seen a tactic that resembles what used to be call in the NBA as "Hack a Shaq", that is you attack the players physically and you hope to not get hurt from the consequences. This has also forced RSL to play more physically and that means this match could be decided by a second yellow card or a foul called in the area, we almost had one of those in the first half but Salazar didn't make the call on a a lot of contact by Osei on Espindola in the area.
I expect that we will probably see a change or two either at half or early in the second half by RSL, depending on the injury status of Saborio who went down holding his knee before the half but appeared to be OK.