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 Thursday, March 21, 2002 14:41 EST

New England Revolution: 2002 Outlook

[ESPN.com news services]

No team seems better equipped for the 2002 MLS season than the New England Revolution, who stocked their roster with the last two Budweiser Scoring Champions, a regular U.S. National Team defender and a midfielder that has played more minutes than any other player in league history.

2001 MLS MVP Alex Pineda Chacon highlights a star-studded attack.
How that mix will come together with returning starters Andy Williams, Wolde Harris, Ted Chronopoulos, Rusty Pierce and Joey Franchino has yet to be seen, but New England head coach Fernando Clavijo certainly has the makings of a championship contender at his disposal.

Never has an MLS team featured the Budweiser Scoring Champions from the two previous seasons, but by releasing several high profile players from last year's squad, the Revolution were able to land striker Mamadou Diallo through the Allocation Draft, and later selected reigning League MVP Alex Pineda Chacon during the Dispersal Draft.

The pair combined to score 28 goals last season, only seven fewer than New England's entire 2001 total of 35. For good measure, Clavijo also drafted Taylor Twellman, a 22-year old American who left Maryland as a sophomore in to join TSV 1860 Munich of the German Bundesliga.

The Revolution also acquired defender Carlos Llamosa in the Allocation Draft, filling the void left by the departure of sweeper Mauricio Wright. Llamosa's presence provides leadership and poise to a young but talented defensive group that features Pierce, Franchino, Leo Cullen and two towering goalkeepers in Juergen Sommer and Adin Brown.

2001 Revolution Leaders
Goals 8, Caté
Assists 7, Andy Williams
Points 24, Caté
GAA 1.68 Juergen Sommer

However, perhaps Clavijo's most overlooked maneuver was importing former Fusion captain Jim Rooney, whose often overlooked scoring ability and lead-by-example attitude could go a long way toward creating the chemistry needed to hoist MLS Cup at CMGI Field on October 20.

Key Additions:
Adin Brown, Mamadou Diallo, Alex Pineda Chacon, Carlos Llamosa, Steve Ralston

Key Departures:
Leonel Alvarez, Caté, Matt Okoh, William Sunsing, Mauricio Wright

2002 New England Revolution schedule

2002 MLS Preview index

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