New England Revolution head to FC Dallas on the brink of equaling a club-record winning streak, but Bruce Arena is not expecting an easy time of things against FC Dallas.
The Revs have won five MLS games in a row – one short of matching their best ever run of wins in the regular season – ahead of Sunday’s trip to the Toyota Stadium.
Arena’s side lead the Western Conference standings, whereas Dallas are winless in six and are at the foot of the Western Conference.
Dallas were beaten 2-0 by Los Angeles FC last time out, but they have not lost back-to-back games in over a year and Revs coach Arena is wary of his side’s lowly opponents.
“It will be typical of any game in MLS – difficult and challenging,” Arena said. “And I’m sure Dallas will be prepared to play.
“They’re a team looking to get three points and will be a tough opponent. We’ve made adjustments for every game over the last five or six games and that will be the same here.”
The Revs have a perfect five wins from five at home this season, though their record on the road is less impressive – two wins, two draws and one defeat.
Dallas have drawn each of their last three home games, meanwhile, and goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer accepts that his side have often been the victims of their own downfall.
“The biggest thing is that we can’t get our heads down. We have to keep pushing and moving forward and just solve these problems,” he said.
“We’re in the game for large stretches and then there’s mental breakdowns and not making the right moves as a team.
“Our whole team is not on the same page sometimes and then it breaks down and it opens us up, so we all have to be on the same page, put the work in and not switch off.”
PLAYERS TO WATCH
FC Dallas – Justin Che
Homegrown talent Che was handed his Dallas debut in Wednesday’s defeat to LAFC, operating as a right wing-back and dealing well with the opposition’s talented attackers. The 17-year-old led the way for open-play crosses and interceptions and also played two key passes, so the youngster may well retain his place for the visit of the Revs.
New England Revolution – Carles Gil
Gil assisted goals for Tajon Buchanan, DeJuan Jones and Gustavo Bou in the space of 51 minutes in the Revs’ win over New York Red Bulls in midweek. The Spanish attacker now has 10 assists in as many games this term, double the number of any other player, making him an early candidate for this year’s MVP award.
KEY OPTA FACTS
– FC Dallas are unbeaten in eight straight meetings with New England going back to 2012, winning seven in a row before a 1-1 draw in the last meeting between the sides in March 2019. Prior to this run by Dallas, the Revolution won 11 of the previous 16 meetings from August 2004 to September 2011 (D2 L3).
– Dallas have not lost consecutive matches since May 2019. They have collected at least one point following each of their last 19 defeats (W9 D10, including playoffs).
– New England have won five straight matches for the first time since a six-game winning streak in August-September 2015. The Revs could tie the longest regular season winning streak in club history with a win over Dallas, equaling the six-game streaks from 2015 and April-May 2005.
– Dallas’ last eight goals have all been scored at Toyota Stadium dating back to the beginning of May. Seven different players have scored those goals, with Jader Obrian the only player to score twice in that span.
– Gil has recorded multiple assists in consecutive appearances, the first Revs player to do so since Joe-Max Moore had multiple assists in three straight games in 1998.