Opening Night Running Diary: Revs @ Los Angeles
Posted by Mike Marshall on March 27, 2010
Good evening, Revolution fans, and welcome to the 2010 Season Opener as the Revolution face the Los Angeles Galaxy at the Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.
…or if you’re Fox Soccer Channel, it’s Landon Donovan and the Los Angeles Galaxy against some other guys.
10:58 PM: Special thanks to the San Jose Earthquakes for not drawing out their 3-0 thrashing at the hands of the reigning champions. Way to finish on time, boys.
10:59 PM: Ugh. Just got a hold of the Revs’ starting lineup: Burpo, Sinovic, Gibbs (c), Osei, Alston, Tierney, Niouky, Phelan, Nyassi, Schilawski, Dube. Bench: Shuttleworth, Barnes, Videira, Smith, Mansally, Boggs.
That might honestly be the worst Opening Day lineup in Revolution history. I’m not even kidding.
11:04 PM: First impressions: Hate, hate, hate, HATE the new uniforms.
11:o4 PM: Christopher Sullivan in what might already be the understatement of the year, “Look for New England to play secure tonight.”
“Play secure” is soccer color commentator code for “couldn’t score in a brothel while holding a fist full of $50s”.
11:08 PM: Preston Burpo breaks out the yellow goalkeeper jersey for this one. Don’t think that’s a good omen.
11:09 PM: GAME ON!!!
11:11 PM: Nice idea from Kevin Alston trying to spring Schilawski with a quick header, but the play is offside.
11;13 PM: Los Angeles 1-0 New England. Well, that didn’t take long. Donovan swings in a free kick from the left wing, and Edson Buddle finishes easily with his head near the six yard box. Not exactly textbook defending from Pat Phelan there.
I hate this season already.
11:17 PM: For those of you keeping track, Sainey Nyassi still thinks he has an advantage one-on-three, Pat Phelan is still a half step slow on everything, and posession is something like 80%-20% in favor of Los Angeles.
Other than that, it’s a great start for the Revs.
11:20 PM: Twelve minutes in, and the Revs finally manage to put the ball into the LA penalty area as Tierney’s cross is only 20 yards wide of Kheli Dube.
11:21 PM: Chris Sullivan tells us that Joseph Niouky has a good understanding with Shalrie Joseph. I’m not sure Niouky has been around long enough for Shalrie to learn his name, yet.
11:22 PM: Corner kick for the Revs. Tierney tries to pick out Phelan, who for some reason is making a run not at the near post, but probably 10 yards wide of the post. Doesn’t matter – Omar Gonzalez clears.
11:24 PM: Manny Osei has something stuck to his face.
11:24 PM: Shot of Beckham and Oguchi Onyewu watching the game in the stands. Everybody drink.
11:26 PM: Kevin Alston is booked as he tries to toe poke a ball away from Eddie Lewis, but manages to catch the back of Lewis’ leg. Donovan’s free kick is cleared, and the Revs proceed to employ the s l o w e s t counter in the history of soccer, which is snuffed out easily.
11:30 PM: It’s not much, but Schilawski showed a nice bit of speed trying to run on to a long ball from Niouky.
11:31 PM: A SHOT!!! 22 minutes in, and Pat Phelan bounces a three-hopper in on Donovan Rickets from about 25 yards out.
11:32 PM: I’m not sure I can take a whole year of Pat Phelan as a starter.
11:33 PM: Sinovic saves a goal, heading out a Dunivant cross for a corner kick.
11:34 PM: Alston must have really caught Lewis as he’s subbed off for Brazilian midfielder Alex. Corner is headed over by Brazilian defender Leonardo. Revs not looking so hot defending set pieces so far.
11:36 PM: Mark Rogandino tells us that Steve Nicol has to be pleased with his team’s performance thus far.
Hallucinogens are never the answer, Mark.
11:40 PM: I’m not sure if I’m more concerned that LA looks dangerous every time they have a chance to set up a set piece, or that Pat Phelan is producing turnovers at a pace that would make Betty Crocker jealous.
11:43 PM: Nyassi earns a corner that’s quickly turned into a Galaxy counterattack. Alston keeps Buddle from scoring his second goal of the night with a left-footed stab after the LA forward had been set up by Alex.
11:48 PM: How many players are in the Revs’ starting lineup tonight that shouldn’t even be in the league? I’m thinking four, maybe five.
11:49 PM: Niouky must have seen Dema Kovalenko’s Greatest Hits video as he earns every bit of a yellow card for a two-footed tackle. Free kick is headed over the bar by Cory Gibbs.
10:50 PM: Hey, look – Preston Burpo hasn’t grown roots, yet.
11:51 PM: Buddle could have a hat trick already, but Manny Osei denies him a goal with a header from a cross off the foot of Mike Magee.
11:54 PM: Have I mentioned how unimpressed I am with Burpo so far?
11:55 PM: Mercifully, we’ve reached halftime. The Galaxy have the lead, they’ve had the ball most of the half, they’ve had half a dozen decent scoring chances, and they’ve got momentum. The Revs have one shot on goal that your average Girls U13 goalkeeper would have stopped… blindfolded.
12:04 PM: We learn that Landon Donovan has a Landon Donovan shrine in his own house. Weak, dude. Weak.
12:10 PM: Game on for the second half. No changes for the Revs because, well, things worked out so well in the first half.
12:11 PM: Yup, real glad we’ve got 17 left-sided midfielders on the roster, and one, maybe two guys who can play on the right.
12:14 PM: Schilawski turns Omar Gonzalez and then centers a ball for Dube before it’s cleared by the Galaxy. Best sequence of the night for the Revs, who are off to a much better start in the 2nd half.
12:16 PM: Juninho loses Niouky and slices in a great cross for Buddle, who is nudged ever so slightly in the air by Alston, or else it’s 2-0.
12:17 PM: Just a prediction… the Revs won’t finish this game with 11 players on the field. It’s that kind of night.
12:19 PM: Sinovic floats in a nice diagonal ball for Dube, who plays across for Schilawski, who plays back for Dube… who blows an absolute sitter. Should be 1-1. Encouraging stuff from the Revs.
12:21 PM: Game’s opened up a bit as Donovan counters, but Mike Magee shoots well high from 25 yards out.
12:22 PM: Obligatory Beckham shot. Everybody drink.
12:22 PM: Another good ball from Sinovic, but Dube volleys wide.
12:23 PM: Zak Boggs on for Sainey Nyassi, who did absolutely nothing tonight. 58th minute.
12:25 PM: Buddle completely whiffs on a shot attempt and lands on his ass. Think Lucy swiping the football away from Charlie Brown, only funnier.
12:28 PM: Is Kenny Mansally that bad that he can’t unseat Kheli Dube?
12:30 PM: Niouky’s not having a good night, but then again, he’s not getting much help.
12:31 PM: Chris Burchall getting ready to come on for LA. Mike Magee comes off.
12:34 PM: On the bright side, I think the Revs’ two best players tonight might be Schilawski and Sinovic.
12:41 PM: …and Mansally is finally on in the 76th minute.
12:42 PM: Why do we let Chris Tierney take free kicks again?
12:43 PM: Donovan suddenly finds acres of space on the counter, tries to lay it off for Juninho, but Niouky intercepts… and procedes to give it right back to Donovan who then finds Buddle for a rocket that scream just by the upper 90.
12:44 PM: Buddle again finds space near the top of the arc for a long shot, but Burpo palms it wide. His best stop of the night.
12:45 PM: Mike Stephens coming on for Juninho. 80th minute.
12:46 PM: Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but Donovan counters and tries to pick out Buddle making a center channel run, but Gibbs knocks it out for a corner.
12:47 PM: Never mind, THAT was Burpo’s best save of the night as he denies Omar Gonzalez on a free header.
12:51 PM: I wonder if Pat Phelan realizes that his team is losing, because he continues to pump aimless balls up the field.
12:52 PM: Donovan is put through on a brakaway, but inexplicably tries to leave it off for Buddle. The pass is too strong and the chance goes begging. Kevin Alston pulls up lame trying to catch Donovan.
12:55 PM: Chris Sullivan calls the Revolution attack predictable. He will later go on to call water “wet” and night “dark”.
12:55 PM: Crap, it’s actually happened. Kevin Alston goes off, and Khano Smith v2.0 is on. God save us all, and heads up on the hill behind Ricketts.
12:58 PM: It’s over. A better 2nd half from the Revs, but nowhere near good enough to earn even a single point. All in all, Revs fans eat a giant crap sandwich on Opening Night.