In the 48th minute of Saturday’s game, Federico Higuaín stood over the ball, preparing to offer one of his trademark free kicks. The New England Revolution players were familiar with this sight as the Argentine scored a right-footed beauty at Gillette Stadium on July 26th. Just like he did that night, Higuaín found a way to beat Bobby Shuttleworth and put the ball into the back of the net.
The goal, which was the only one of the match, was frustrating because the Revolution’s game plan revolved around not committing fouls in dangerous areas. Down a goal, there was still hope as the team had won their last three matches despite forfeiting the first goal on each occasion.
The push for an equalizer was aided by Shuttleworth’s 85th minute penalty stop. The New York native was once again challenged by Higuaín after A.J. Soares brought down Justin Meram in the box. This time, Shuttleworth would get the better of the exchange as he was able to block the midfielder’s attempt. It was Shuttleworth’s second PK stop of the year.
The Revs would have a solid look on net during the game’s dying minutes. In the 87th minute, Chris Tierney forced a loose ball that was collected by Charlie Davies. The forward rushed towards the net before firing a curling effort that was pushed aside by Steve Clark. The fingertip save was awe-inspiring to players on both teams.
“I think I lost my mind because I could not believe that he saved it,” Wil Trapp commented.
Davies offered similar sentiments when he said, “I would have bet anything on it that it was going to hit the back of the net. Kudos to Steve Clark to make such a great save when his team needed him.”
Unfortunately for the Revolution, Clark’s heroics meant that they would not collect full points. Regardless, they maintained third place in the Eastern Conference which sets up a key fixture for Friday as they Revs will visit second-placed Sporting KC. It’s a game that the Revs are already focusing on.
“We made some mistakes,” captain Jose Goncalves reflected. “Now we have to move on and take those mistakes and try to avoid them in the next game.”
(image courtesy of Kari Heistad)