The Columbus Crew will look to extend several streaks when they travel to Gillette Stadium to play the New England Revolution on Saturday.
Columbus (6-3-3) is tied for second place in the Eastern Conference with 21 points, four behind Atlanta United, with three wins and two ties in its past five games.
The Crew have won two straight, and coupled with a 0-0 draw at the Seattle Sounders on May 5, have recorded three consecutive shutouts for the first time since four in a row from March 26 to April 17 in 2011.
The stretch of 315 minutes without allowing a goal is the third-longest in franchise history.
New England (5-3-2) will try to put an end to that streak by exploiting the Crew’s strength. Columbus loves to get its defenders involved in the attack and play the ball wide.
“They’re very stubborn in the way they play. They want to play out as much as they can, sometimes to a fault. Hopefully we can take advantage of that,” Revolution midfielder Kelyn Rowe said. “We obviously want to do the same in the sense that we want to play the way we play. We’re at home, so we want to press a little bit.”
New England likes to force turnovers and run off the counterattack. The Revolution, though, will have to do so without midfielder Diego Fagundez because of yellow-card accumulation.
The teams played to an entertaining 2-2 tie in Columbus on April 21.
“They’re an excellent home team,” Crew coach Gregg Berhalter said of the Revolution’s 4-1-1 mark at Gillette. “They’ve been generating a number of chances through their pressing, and we need to be prepared. We have a style of play and it’s very important to us, but we need to be sharp.”
—Field Level Media