Nine days after their two-game win streak was snapped in Dallas, the Revolution (2-3-0, 6 points) return to Gillette Stadium on Saturday against conference rival D.C. United (1-2-2, 5 points).
The game will kick off at 4:00 p.m. and will be broadcast on Comcast SportsNet New England. The Sports Hub 98.5 HD2 will provide a radio feed to local listeners.
Saturday’s conference clash will be the first games between New England and D.C. during the regular season. The teams will renew their rivalry on May 26 and Sept. 15, with both games to be played at RFK Stadium.
Last season, the Revolution claimed their sole series sweep against the very same D.C. United by claiming a 2-1 home win on Mar. 26 and a 1-0 road win on Jul. 20.
-Going into Saturday’s game, the Revolution are riding a six-game unbeaten streak (5-0-1) against their longtime rival, with victories in the past five. The last time New England lost to D.C. came on Oct. 16, 2008, when D.C. beat the Revolution 2-1 at RFK Stadium.
-Although the Revolution have proven the better team in recent matchups, the D.C. defense has been especially stout against league competition as of late. In its past three matches, D.C. has only allowed one goal, which came in a 4-1 rout of FC Dallas on Mar. 30.
-One player the Revolution won’t have at their disposal is club captain Shalrie Joseph. The Grenadian midfielder was suspended for Saturday’s match for a foul he committed on Dallas midfielder Ricardo Villar last week. Joseph was also fined an undisclosed amount.
-Blake Brettschneider and Clyde Simms are two players on the Revolution roster who previously played for D.C. United. Brettschneider, who was selected in the second round of last year’s Supplemental Draft by D.C., scored a goal and added two assists in 15 games in 2011 but was cut by the team during the offseason. Simms played seven years (2005-2011) with D.C. before his option was declined during the offseason. He played in 187 games and scored three goals to along with seven assists during his United career.
-Saturday’s conference clash will feature a matchup of the league’s youngest head coaches. D.C. United’s Ben Olsen is the youngest coach in the league at 34 years old, while Revolution coach Jay Heaps, 35, is the second-youngest. Olsen and Heaps certainly aren’t strangers, as they often faced off against each other during their playing days.
INJURY REPORTS (as of Apr. 10):
D.C. UNITED -- OUT: DF Ethan White (R knee surgery); MF Lance Rozeboom (L ACL tear); QUESTIONABLE: GK Bill Hamid (L ankle sprain / bone bruising); MF Kurt Morsink (L foot neurectomy); PROBABLE: FW Josh Wolff (L groin strain)
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION -- OUT: FW Zak Boggs (R ankle sprain); MF Sainey Nyassi (R hamstring strain); DOUBTFUL: DF Kevin Alston (L hamstring tightness); MF Benny Feilhaber (L peroneal strain); QUESTIONABLE: GK Matt Reis (L knee swelling); MF Clyde Simms (R calf tightness)
Brian O'Connell is covering the Revolution for ESPNBoston.com. He is the co-founder of New England Soccer Today (www.nesoccertoday.com), which covers professional soccer within New England. He can be reached at BOConnell21@aol.com.