RSL Soapbox: Who is the best forward on the Revolution and why?
The Bent Musket: That's actually a tough question to answer. In terms of pure talent, you have to say Juan Agudelo. He's got the ball skills, size, finishing ability, and instincts to be a top-5 forward in MLS and probably even hack it at a high level overseas. His issue is that he's streaky, and in this team, it's becoming tough to figure out how to use him, since Charlie Davies simply refuses to relinquish a starting spot.
Davies' best qualities are his movement and his work rate. He finishes well, but it's also the way he ghosts around defenders and pulls defenses apart with his running. He plays the lone striker role in this team even though he's probably not as great physically or with his distribution because he harries the defense and creates space. Behind Agudelo and Davies is probably Bunbury and Fagundez, both of whom are better as wingers than true forwards.
RSL Soapbox: What is it about Jermaine Jones that pushed New England to the next level?
The Bent Musket: Jermaine brought a level of leadership and experience that this team was lacking. He knows how to win and he knows how to get things done at the highest level. Before he arrived, the mental toughness and the focus in the team was...well, it wasn't there. In addition to his work rate and ability in midfield, that element of leadership pushed the Revs over the top. When they go behind in games, or when the team is presented with adversity, Jones has pushed them to a point where they can overcome it and still get wins. It happened all through last year.
RSL Soapbox: How far away are the Revs from having a soccer specific stadium?
The Bent Musket: I can't really answer that. It seems now like they're closer than ever with this Widett Circle proposal, but they seemed this close almost ten years ago when they were closing in on some property in a different neighborhood of Boston. The Menino administration blocked that move. Then they were close a few years later in Somerville - the Curtatone administration has been less-than-willing to entertain the idea, though. Stadium updates come out around the same time every year like clockwork, and nothing ever seems to happen.
The hard truth is twofold: the Boston real estate market is expensive and difficult, for one. The Krafts want a public partnership and the political climate for such things is terrible right now. Also, the Krafts wholly own Gillette Stadium and Patriot Place, which means they completely control all the revenue streams. Basically, they're in no hurry. We'll see it happen eventually, but not that soon, I think.