In case you haven’t been paying attention, the Revs are the hottest team in MLS, currently on an 11 game unbeaten streak. This Saturday they face the biggest challenge they’ve had in years. They will go up against league leading LAFC at home. The Revs currently sit in a playoff position in seventh place, but a win with some help could boost them up to fourth, third, or even second place in the East. As mentioned, LAFC are the best team in MLS, but the Revs are the hottest team. Since the hiring of Bruce arena, the Revs haven’t lost a single game. Saturday’s game will be the first big challenge of Arenas tenure. It’s also the biggest game of the year, and here’s why.
Make a statement
People have been talking throughout this streak that the Revs have a chance to make a push for the playoffs. But the fact of the matter is, with the exception of Gustavo Bou, this is the same team that went 2-8-2 to start the season. A win against a powerhouse like LAFC will prove to people that this team has what it takes to be contenders in the MLS Cup playoffs. The strongest team the Revs have faced on this streak is DC United, who they didn’t even beat. Although Bruce Arena has won four games on the road, something no other head coach had done since 2014, he still has more to prove.
A Familiar face
On Saturday, the Revs will also be visited by a friendly face in Lee Nguyen. Lee, on paper, will always be regarded as a Revs legend. However, the way he exited the team has left a taint on his reputation. Half of fans will tell you he’s one of the best, some fans will tell you they hate him. One thing’s for sure: When the whistle blows on Saturday it will be all business. If you’re wondering if he’ll get cheered or booed on Saturday, think back to Wes Welcker’s return. It will be a healthy mix of both.
What This Game Means
If the Revs lose, the longest unbeaten streak they’ve had since 2005 will come to an end. But if they win, they will cement themselves as a real Cup contender. A loss could see the Revs fall out of a playoff position if Toronto is able to beat the Redbulls. However, a win could mathematically put the Revs into second place in the East. What would it take for this to happen? Montreal would have to lose to Colorado. Atlanta would have to lose to the LA Galaxy, and NYCFC lose to Real Salt Lake. Then DC United would have to lose to Philadelphia.
On top of all of this, the Revs would have to erase a 14 goal differential to take second place. And to take third, a 10 goal differential. A win, combined with loses from both New York teams and Montreal, would put the Revs in fourth. This will be the most important game of the Revs season up until this point, so get yourself out to Gillette Stadium at 7:30 on Saturday to witness it in person.