Since moving into Red Bull Arena in 2010, the Red Bulls are a perfect 4-0-0 at home against the New England Revolution, their most recent outing a 4-1 rout on April 20.
That victory set off a four-game win streak for New York, starting off a seven-game unbeaten run that included a 1-1 draw in New England on May 11. It’s a nice memory, but right now it means nothing, and the Red Bulls aren’t going to fall into the trap of taking their Saturday opponents for granted.
“Listen, when you see the result, D.C. [United] winning the Open Cup, I expect the best from every single team, because everyone can beat each other,” midfielder Tim Cahill told reporters on Thursday. “You expect a real disciplined, compact team coming in here to beat us, because it’s a big deal to take points off us. And [New England] need the points, as well.”
History is pushing against New England’s chances, but their recent road form raises questions as well. The Revolution’s last three games away from Gillette Stadium have seen them go 0-2-1, giving up six goals over their two losses and earning their one result against lowly Toronto FC.
Rivalry games rarely adhere to expectations, however, and doubly so in a league where parity reigns supreme.
“You got to get into the right momentum at the right time,” striker Thierry Henry said. “They’re doing that right now… Montreal was killing the league at the beginning of the season [as was] Dallas. This league is so weird that you don’t know who’s going to be there at the end.”
The Revolution are currently in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, two spots out a ticket to the playoffs. Far from being out of the picture, however, New England are one point behind the fifth-place Philadelphia Union. Needless to say, that April 20 loss to New York is long behind them.
“I think it would be foolish to think that the team that we played 4-1 is going to be that same team,” goalkeeper Luis Robles said. “I feel like that was at a point in time where they didn’t know exactly what formation they wanted to play and who they had up top. Since then they’ve added a couple of players and they got a couple players back that are healthy and I think they have a very exciting attack.”