The Revolution remain in must-win mode as they host the Montreal Impact Saturday in a match with playoff implications.
New England sits in eighth place in the Eastern Conference, 4 points behind both Atlanta and Montreal. Four of its remaining eight games come against those two opponents, leaving the door wide open for a late run to the postseason.
Four of the remaining games also come inside the confines of Gillette Stadium, a place where the Revolution have made it tough for opponents to generate offense. They have kept three consecutive clean sheets at home with excellent defensive performances.
“It’s not just about the back four and the goalkeeper,” said defender Chris Tierney. “It’s about the whole team having the attitude that we’re not going to concede goals.”
Saturday’s contest will be the first meeting of the season between New England and Montreal and the first since the last day of the 2016 campaign. The Revolution walked away victorious in that contest, 3-0, hitting the woodwork on several occasions as well.
The Revolution have a history of being a solid September club, and they lived up to that last weekend with a 4-0 thrashing of Orlando City on a big night in Foxborough. Striker Kei Kamara scored his first career hat trick and reached the 100-goal plateau, while midfielder Lee Nguyen became just the fifth player in league history to register four assists in a game.
The Revolution also saw the return from injury of Xavier Kouassi, as the midfielder was a second-half substitute. And newcomer Krisztian Nemeth recorded an assist on his first touch for the Revolution.
The Impact also were in action last weekend, falling at home, 1-0, to a streaking Chicago team. Bastian Schweinsteiger scored the only goal just before the hour mark. The strike came less than 10 minutes after referee Baldomero Toledo sent off Montreal center back Deian Boldor after video review showed the Romanian defender’s foul was worthy of a red card.
The New England defense will have to be solid Saturday, as Montreal presents two of the most dynamic midfielders in MLS: Ignacio Piatti and Blerim Dzemaili.
“There’s a lot of weapons you have to be concerned about with this Montreal team,” said Tierney. “So it’s going to be a really difficult test, I think even a harder test than Orlando was last weekend, so we have to be even better than we were.”
Revolution vs. Impact
■ When, where: Saturday, 7:30 p.m., Gillette Stadium, Foxborough.
■ TV, radio: CSN, WBZ-FM (98.5).
■ Coaches: Revolution — Jay Heaps; Impact — Mauro Biello.
■ Formations: Revolution — 4-4-2 diamond; Impact — 4-3-3.
■ Goalkeepers: Revolution — Cody Cropper; Impact — Evan Bush.
■ Referee: Armando Villarreal.
■ Out: Revolution — M Kelyn Rowe (knee); Impact — D Ambroise Oyongo (knee).
■ Miscellany: New England has a plus-20 goal differential at home, fourth-best in MLS . . . The Revolution are 5-7-2 against the Impact all-time, including 2-3-1 at home . . . Kei Kamara moved past Revolution great Taylor Twellman into eighth place on the all-time MLS scoring list last weekend with his 102nd goal.