By Tiffany Williams –
On Saturday night, the New England Revolution will kickoff the 2023 MLS regular season down in North Carolina. The Revolution and Charlotte FC will meet for the season opener at Bank of America Stadium at 7:30 p.m. ET.
On Thursday, Sporting Director & Head Coach Bruce Arena and Revolution midfielder and captain Carles Gil met with the media to talk about Saturday’s match.
When asked about Carles Gil’s leadership, Arena said “Well, you know, Carles [Gil] is obviously good player. He cares about the team. It just comes natural with every day at training. And over a short period of time, everyone gets adjusted to Carles and Carles gets adjusted to them. There’s not anything special we do. Good players can deal and react with anything that’s thrown at them, and Carles is good at welcoming the new players and helping them adjust to the team.”
When asked about he is expecting from Charlotte FC, Arena said “Well, I think if you asked almost every coach in the league, they would have a difficult time answering that question because they don’t know what teams look like in the early weeks of the season, especially the first game. We played Charlotte twice last year; we played them in I think March and April and haven’t seen them since. However, when we look at their roster, it’s changed an awful lot, so it’s hard to predict what to expect out of them, but it’s a team playing in their home opener in a football stadium with a crowd, I’m told a crowd that’s going to be around 50,000 people so I think that’s going to be a game where they’re going to be playing with a lot of energy to start the game, a lot of high pace to it and we’ll have to sort things out pretty quick. We can’t predict their lineup because the team has changed an awful lot from the team we saw last April, so we have to have confidence in our team and what we’re doing and that’s been the focus for this opening game, getting our team ready to play and at the same time realizing that there’s not a whole lot we’re going to know about our opponent.”
When asked the impact of playing in front of a sellout crowd in Charlotte, Carles Gil said “A good impact. I think everyone likes to play in these types of games with many fans and a big atmosphere. They will push for sure to help their team [Charlotte FC]. So yeah, I think it will be a good atmosphere to start the season and to get the three points.” Gil was also asked about the expectations for this season and he said, “For me, always the expectation is very high when I look at my teammates, our team, our staff, everything. But I think now is the moment to show everything on the pitch and we didn’t last year. So, it is a good moment for us to show that after a bad year we can change things to learn about that and start with a good game and try to win these three points.”
On Friday, the New England Revolution announced that they re-signed midfielder Emmanuel Boateng to a one-year contract through the 2023 Major League Soccer season with an additional one-year club option for 2024.
“We are pleased to have Ema re-sign with the Revolution,” said Revolution Sporting Director and Head Coach Bruce Arena. “Ema has been a great contributor to our team both on and off the field, and I’m excited to have him return to our club.”