FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- When the Revolution acquired Charlie Davies last August, the coaching staff put a plan in place to get the most out of their newest addition. A plan that, ultimately, had to be scrapped -- but with good reason.
After months of trying to fit the forward into an outside midfielder’s role, the Revolution coaching staff tossed the blueprints and put the poacher back up top earlier this summer. And it's clear that Davies, who scored in each of the last two games, hasn't missed a beat.
“It’s natural to me,” Davies said. “I’ve played forward since I was 6 years old. Whether you’re playing with two or one (forwards), it’s kind of still the same responsibility. You’ve got to score, and you’ve got to hold up the ball.”
Davies didn’t get many opportunities to do either while stationed out on the wing earlier this season. Although injuries kept him on the sidelines for much of the spring, he still found a way to carve out a role, albeit briefly, as a so-called “super sub.”
In a March 29 game at San Jose that was tied at one apiece late, Davies came off the bench and immediately sparked the attack. The Revolution went on to win 2-1 in stoppage time, thanks in part to a heady play in which Davies played a quick pass on a restart moments before Lee Nguyen scored the decider.
But even though the 28-year-old Manchester, N.H., native appeared to be getting comfortable in his new role, Davies still pined for the opportunity to play up top and create havoc for opposing defenses.
“On the wing it’s a little bit different,” Davies said. “Once I was able to get the chance to play in the center, things have been much easier for me. It’s been an easier transition with the guys.”
There’s no doubt that the transition back to striker has paid dividends for Davies. In his second start up top, Davies collected his first assist of the season in a 3-0 win over Colorado. A week later, he followed it up with his first goal of the season against New York. And on Saturday, he added another goal to the ledger in a 1-1 draw against Portland.
“I think Charlie has done an excellent job,” Revolution coach Jay Heaps said. “Tonight again, he was spritely, he was moving well off the ball, holding it up and scored a great goal.”
While Heaps has been impressed with the way his energetic forward has played over the last three games, Davies was quick to credit his teammates for helping him find success that he envisioned when he first joined the club last August.
“I think most of the team knows the way I like to play, and where I’m most dangerous, and playing that center position -- it’s easier for me to be in those positions,” Davies said. “I think it’s easier for the guys to get me those balls in the positions that I’m most dangerous in.”