Connect with us
New England Revolution New England Revolution

New England Revolution

Dielna Brings Versatility to Revolution Backline

Dielna's signing was announced on Friday, July 28th

Published

on

Dielna Brings Versatility to Revolution Backline

Last week the New England Revolution announced the signing of journeyman French defender Claude Dielna. The 29-year-old has been attached to clubs such as Olympiacos in Greece, AC Ajaccio while in Ligue 1 and Sheffield Wednesday in the English Championship, but Dielna has spent most of his recent career out on loan to clubs of lesser stature. Over the past two years, the 6-foot center back has plied his trade for Slovakia’s Slovan Bratislava and most recently Romanian club Dinamo Bukarest.

The Revolution will add Dielna as a Designated Player or using Targeted Allocation Money pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate and P-1 Visa.

YouTube scouting and varied fan-reports paint the picture of an athletic defender (once given the moniker of “the Gymnast”) who finds his way into the attacking third often and sports a dangerous left peg.

Where does Dielna Fit?

Though most often seen in the center of defense, Dielna played 10 of his 25 matches with Sheffield Wednesday at left back during their 14/15 campaign. He found 3 matches on the left with Ajaccio during a 13/14 campaign as well. He may be a candidate to succeed an aging Chris Tierney and relieve Kelyn Rowe of his defensive duties.

Dielna will also compete with Ligue 1 loanee Benjamin Angoua and rookie Joshua Smith to complete a center back pairing next to Antonio Delamea.

Though not a splashy get for what is a potential DP signing, he does give the Revolution defense a bit of needed reinforcement after letting up over 1.6 goals per game thus far in 2017. Coach Jay Heaps suggested Dielna allows the Revs to give opposing teams a few new looks as well.

“It gives us a lot of options, and that’s what we need; we need options to be able to go three in the back, (play with) a center back with a left foot, or a left back with a little bit more aerial presence. Things like that are going to be important for us to have some options defensively.”

What would a three-man back line look like?

Here is my idea of a 3-5-2 featuring Dielna:

This formation takes advantage of the flexibility, athleticism and attacking prowess of both Dielna and Farrell, centered around the sensible play of Delamea. It allows Kei Kamara, Juan Agudelo and Teal Bunbury continue to fight for time up top, Lee Nguyen to pulls the strings, and Scott Caldwell to pair with a hard-nosed Xavier Kouassi or Gershon Koffie to hold down the center of the park.

Options at Wing Back

Rowe has admirably plugged the Tierney-sized hole in the 16/17 Revolution back line, but as his recent Gold Cup stint reminds us- he belongs further up the pitch. A role as a wing back may play to his attacking strengths and continue to provide the squad decent defensive cover.

Fagundez has been praised (and deservedly so) for the maturation of the defensive side to his game, but his inclusion as a left wing back may be worrisome against a more prolific attack. Tierney might find some joy in this role, but I question if he has the legs to cover an entire flank on his own for 90 minutes.

What to Expect in 2017

These left-sided question marks give me pause over a full-90 but may be more effective as a late tactical switch. Heaps has previously made the move to a three-man back line when in search of a late goal. I suspect this is when we will see the formation deployed most often this season. Though it should be remembered that the club was willing to make a complete tactical shift to the 4-4-2 diamond late last year.

Dielna will only have 11 matches at best to make an impact by the time he’s eligible to join the squad. I’m not sure he’ll find his home on the back line in that short a time, but the Revs will hope the Frenchman provides answers for what’s been a questionable back four (or three).

University of Alabama alum who watches too much soccer. Writing about the New England Revolution for Trifecta Network. Previously covered SKA Saint Petersburg of the KHL and high school sports in the state of Maine.

New England Revolution

Revolution Send Fans Home Happy In Record Breaking Win

Published

on

New England Revolution

With any hopes of making the playoffs diminished thanks to a New York Red Bulls win last week, it may have seemed like there was nothing left to play for in the Revolution’s season. But in fact the Revs had an opportunity to do something that had not been done in the club’s history. Win 12 games at home in a single season. They have had 11 home wins twice before including the magical MLS Cup run in 2014. The Revs were also looking to play spoiler to an New York City FC team who would clinch a playoff bye with a win. So in the final home match of the season, the Revolution wanted to give the faithful at Gillette one last time to celebrate this year.

After a quiet first 25 minutes the Revolution encountered a game changer they had seen four times in the past five games, a red card. This time though, the call went in the Revolution’s favor after 2nd year player Jack Harrison slid studs up into Teal Bunbury. The Revolution were a man up with plenty of time left.

The Revs failed to capitalize in the first half entering halftime in a scoreless draw. Then in the 51st minute, Diego Fagundez took a shot from just outside the box on an assist from Andrew Ferrall for his first goal since June 3rd. Later in the second minute of stoppage time, Fagundez found the back of the net again on his own rebound off NYCFC goalkeeper Sean Johnson.

The Revolution were minutes away from a shutout when only seconds after Fagundez’s second goal, NYCFC sent the ball up field and it fell to Khiry Shelton who headed it over Brad Knighton who was visibly upset that he had lost his clean sheet on such a freak play.

Despite that scare, the Revolution ended the game on top 2-1. The win was a bizarre, bittersweet moment for the team. They had broken a club record for home wins despite not making the playoffs. The Revolution have one more match on Sunday in Montreal before they say goodbye to the 2017 season.

Continue Reading

New England Revolution

Delamea, Bunbury and Rowe Among Winners In Annual Revolution Team Awards

Published

on

New England Revolution

Before Sunday’s final home match of the season, the Revolution kicked off Fan Appreciation Night by announcing the recipients of the Revolution team awards. The awards are handed out each year to players from both the senior team and the Revolution Academy.

Antonio Delamea won both Defender of the Year and Most Valuable Player. Delamea has proven to be one of the Revolutions best signings when he transferred from Slovenian side Olimpija Ljubljana, becoming the first Slovenian to play in Major League Soccer. He scored one goal and one assist and played 2,547 minutes in 29 matches for the Revs this season. He was also added to a shortlist for both MLS defender and newcomer of the year. With the MVP win, Delamea joins a list of Revolution legends that include Shalrie Joseph, Matt Reis, and Taylor Twellman.

The Player’s Player of the Year which is voted on by the clubs players was awarded to Teal Bunbury. His season had a frustrating start. After spending most of the season on the bench, Bunbury made his first start on July 2nd against the Philadelphia Union. Since then he has scored 7 goals in 14 games becoming one of the most in-form players in Major League Soccer. In an interview on this week’s Far Post Podcast, Teal Bunbury was asked about the ups and downs of the season. “I’m always a guy who wants to work hard in training, wants to work hard in the games but just want’s a fair shot” he said. “If I’m out there I’m playing for my teammates”.

For the fourth straight year, the Humanitarian of the Year went to Kelyn Rowe. Rowe’s presence off the field has been as important as his contributions on the field. He’s worked with several charities including the Jessie Rees Foundation and Kelyn’s NEGU (Never Ever Give Up) Crew. The latter was started in 2015 and gives children with cancer a chance to experience a Revolution game and walk around the Gillette Stadium pitch. This year was also a highlight year for Rowe on the field. He was called up to the United States National Team for the first time to compete in the CONCACAF Gold Cup in which he scored a goal against Nicaragua and helped the US win the tournament.

The award for Academy Player of the Year went to Joe Britto. The 18-year-old midfielder from Connecticut has been called up to youth national team camps since 2013. He supports the Revolution, Benfica, Portugal, and the US Men’s National Team, and his favorite players are Neymar, Pablo Aimar and Christiano Ronaldo. Britto is attending UNC Charlotte who was the Conference USA regular season champions in 2016.

Continue Reading

New England Revolution

Revolution Officially Eliminated From Playoff Contention

Published

on

New England Revolution

The New England Revolution’s playoff hopes are now a mathematical impossibility. This is thanks to the New York Red Bulls beating the Vancouver Whitecaps Saturday, securing the 6th and final playoff spot in the eastern conference. New York won decisively 3-0 having 56.8% possession and 18 total shots to Vancouver’s 3.

The Revolution’s chances of making the playoffs were slim and relied on a lot of scoreboard watching for both the team and the fans. They needed to win both their final two games and New York would have to get less than three points in their final three games. Before Saturday, the Red Bulls were on an eight-game winless streak. That streak did not include a loss in the US Open Cup Final against Sporting Kansas City.

New England still has two matches remaining this season. Their final home match is on Sunday, October 15th. That match will be fan appreciation night at Gillette Stadium and all week leading up to the match. The last match of the season will see them travel to Montreal to take on the Impact.

Continue Reading

Most Popular

Copyright © 2017 Trifecta Network