The All-Star break will come in handy for both the United and the Revs as they seek a way to improve and gain some consistency. Both units weren’t presenting some particularly shiny performances over the last few weeks. United has been in a crisis for a long time. Wayne Rooney’s arrival caused some sparks of life, but that was nothing special.
On the other side, the Revolution fell out of the playoff zone in the East, even though many believed that this team had the power to win the championship. A six-game winless stretch saw them wasting too many points, which eventually led to this situation.
DC United Overview
Wayne Rooney brought some fire into United’s locker room, and his team did collect four points in the last three games, which is a certain improvement for DC. However, they have to not only keep it that way but push even stronger; otherwise, there won’t be any playoff action for them and their fans.
The defense has been the biggest problem for this unit. The most recent game against New York Red Bulls ended 0-0, and that was the first time that the United kept a clean sheet after May 8 this year.
So 15 games passed, and during that terrible stretch, DC became one of the worst teams in the MLS, often allowing three or more hits in their net. Even in the moments when their attack managed to get some consistency, the back line was so terrible that they simply couldn’t do anything.
Bill Hamid, Adrien Perez, and Bradley Smith are injured for the moment. On the other hand, the Belgian striker Christian Benteke could make his first start for DC after arriving from overseas.
New England Revolution Overview
Before the start of the year and during the opening period, the Revs were considered to be one of the top favorites to win the MLS Cup. But as time went by, they began slowing down, eventually not posting a win for six consecutive events.
Right now, Bruce Arena’s crew is outside the playoff zone but with the same number of points as the Chicago Fire, the team that occupies the last playoff seed in the East. The good thing for New England is that they have a game in hand compared to most of the direct rivals.
The Revolution snapped a cold streak on the road in Orlando in the last round, beating City 0-3. Arena’s unit wasn’t dominant or anything, but very efficient and rational in their game, performing fast and precise counters. This was the third straight event for them not to concede, boosting morale before the critical part of the campaign.
Jon Bell, Gustavo Bou, and Jacob Jackson are all injured, and their appearance is not confirmed.
DC United @ New England Revolution Prediction
Rooney is trying to fix the defense, but that isn’t working well for him right now. DC simply has a poor back line that cracks under pressure. A clean sheet against the Red Bulls is an improvement, but we sincerely doubt that the boys from the capital can get away undefeated from Massachusetts.
This is one of the crucial games of the year for New England, who needs to win it for several reasons. The first is to get back inside the playoff zone. With three points here, Arena and the crew will probably jump over a few teams ahead of them.