By Tiffany Williams –
It’s GameDay at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts as tge New England Revolution host Houston Dynamo FC for the club’s 2023 MLS home opener.
The Revolution kicked off their 2023 MLS regular season with a 1-0 win at Charlotte FC last weekend in front of a crowd of over 69,000 fans at Bank of America Stadium.
The Revolution, Saturday night, will be looking to improve upon a 16-6-5 all-time record in home openers when they take the field, including a 12-4-5 mark since 2002 when the stadium first opened.
GK Djordje Petrović on Saturday night, is set to make his 25th appearance across all l competitions for New England after registering his eighth career shutout last weekend.
New England’s offseason acquisitions, M Latif Blessing, M Joshua Bolma, M Jack Panayotou, D Dave Romney, and F Bobby Wood – could all potentially make their home debuts for the Revolution on Saturday. Romney and Wood saw action in last weekend’s season-opening victory.
Revolution Sporting Director & Head Coach Bruce Arena met with the the media on Thursday and when he was asked if he was pleasantly surprised with the team’s performance in Charlotte and the importance of getting off to a good start in 2023, Arena said “I don’t think I was pleasantly surprised. I think we played a solid game. Certainly, we’re going to need to play better each week than that, but for 90-plus minutes we had a really coordinated effort by our group, so that was a real positive. I thought the contributions of our players coming into the game was very good. I thought our backline played a very good game. The whole team, it was a real good team effort. With any team in any year, I think winning your first game is a real plus. It gives our guys a real boost as we continue to move forward into the season, so that was real good and I think it created a real positive atmosphere.”
When asked if Gustavo Bou is expected to play on Saturday, Arena said “No, [Gustavo Bou] just came in yesterday, so we’ll get him through a week of training and make a decision for the game next week, see if he’s positioned to play at all.”
Revolution Midfielder Matt Polster also met with the media this week, and when asked about potentially opening the season with two wins for the first time in team history, Polster said “Yeah, I think we knew the first game is always difficult to tell, you know? You’re feeling different teams out and I think our situation was unique, obviously, with the size of the crowd and obviously emotions within the game, and I thought the team did really well with dealing with those aspects. And then moving into Houston, you know, now we’re playing at home where we should be determining more of the game and how it flows, so for us, we’re focused on Houston and how we can come up with three points.”
When asked about his role as a defensive midfielder and contributing defensively, Polster said “I know I play defensive mid but I’m a midfielder. But the flow within the midfield is a little different. Carles [Gil] drops deep at times, which allows one of the other midfielders to take that role up a little bit higher, so if we can combine in the midfield at times, it allows me to roam, but for the most part, they want me in that pivot role where I’m defending and making sure I’m shaping the back four.”
Saturday night’s match against Houston Dynamo FC is the first time since June 2019 these two clubs have met, and New England leads the all-time regular season series with Houston 13-6-7, including a 6-2-5 mark at home.
Saturday’s match can be heard on 98.5 The Sports Hub, with Brad Feldman and Charlie Davies calling the action, and on 1260 AM Nossa Radio USA in Portuguese.