I had written and rewritten this post a couple of times over. After going through this process a couple of times over, I just felt that I should keep everything simple and go over some of the numbers.
Up until Juan Agudelo's goal in the 54th minute, the New England Revolution had been winning the possession game by a ratio of 64:36. Unfortunately for the Revs, all of that possession had only lead to 4 shots. Out of all the shots, only Kelyn Rowe's sneaky attempt from the top of the box in the 38th minute was on target and only Chris Tierney's shot in the 35th minute was taken from inside the box. The Fire attack was non-existent on Saturday, but the Fire defense was holding it's shape and keeping the Revs locked down. Here is the shot chart for New England up until the first goal:
Of course, once the Fire were down a goal, they had no choice but to push for an equalizer, leaving themselves vulnerable to counter attacks. Below is New England's shooting once they had the lead.
After the Agudelo goal, it felt like everything just unraveled for the Fire. The team was down a goal on the road against a playoff opponent, and they lost their composure. The game got physical and heated and there was a lot of extra curricular talking going on. With the entire season basically on the line, the Fire couldn't keep it together.
It's not over yet, but the climb out of the bottom just got much steeper.
Mike Magee got involved in the games fairly early but disappeared in the second half.
Below is Magee's passing chart for the game.
Mike Magee completed 12 out of 32 passes. Majority all of Mike's passes are going forward. Usually I equate forwards passes as trying to be on the offensive. Offensive or not, Magee completing less than 40% of his passes (37.5% to be exact) is very low and not the norm. I'm not sure what could be blamed for it. There is not a way on the MLS Chalkboard to tell who the passes were intended to. Were most of these passes targeted to Jaun Luis Anangonó and he an Magee are just not use to each other yet? Was it the turf? Mr. Spence was wondering if Magee was still not fully recovered from his injury. Maybe it is a little of everything. Whatever it is, it is disconcerting.
Duka was by far the most dangerous midfielder for the Fire on Saturday. he was 17 out of 26 for passing and had 2 key passes. He also took on Revolution players with 2 successful dribbles. Unfortunately, he also had 4 unsuccessful dribbles. Still, it's nice to see Dilly to have the confidence and the gumption to take players on.
Egidio Arévalo Rios
Arévalo Rios had a pretty good debut for the Fire. One observation about Arévalo Rios is that he has a pretty crazy vertical leap. He is 5'6", and, on Saturday night, won a couple of headers against players taller than him.
Arévalo Rios made very few mistakes with the ball completing 39 out of 42 passes. He also brought that defensive grit that was expected. On the night he had 2 tackles, 3 interceptions, 5 recoveries and a clearance.
Lee Nguyen is easily on of the more underrated midfielders in the league. Most of the Revolution attack passes through him. He was 58 of 71 passing with 3 key passes. Nguyen also lead the team in recoveries with 10.
This guy looks to have a promising future. While all of the Revolution attack passes through Nguyen, much of the attack starts with Caldwell. With players like Chris Tierney and Andrew Farrel covering the flanks, Caldwell takes care of the center of the field. He was second on the team with recoveries with 7. He also had a tackle, a block and a clearance.
As a defensive midfielder, Caldwell took care of the ball, going 62 out of 68 on passing.