BSJ Match Report: Philadelphia 3, Revolution 2 — Slide reaches six in dreadful fashion

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(David Silverman/Revolution)

FOXBOROUGH — All you need to know about the Revolution’s 3-2 loss to Philadelphia Union Saturday night in quickie form, complete with BSJ quickie analysis and insight.


Delamea handle is the difference: A 74th-minute Philadelphia corner kick saw New England centerback Antonio Delamea reach out and handle the football, awarding the Union with a penalty. Fafa Picault stepped up to the spot and buried the pen to put Philly up 3-2, erasing all the good work the Revs had done in the half an hour beforehand. The Boys In Blue now are on a six-match slide since the calendar turned to July, with four defeats and two draws sprinkled in, and the defeat pushes the Revs out of the playoff places — while Philadelphia takes their place, albeit in fifth.

"It’s my fault that we lost this game and I think everyone can be mad at me," Delamea said after the game. "I’ll take the blame and just try to prevent things like this from happening in the future."

New England comes from two goals down to pull level: After a rather drab close to the first half, which we highlight below, New England came out of the locker room with a great deal of energy. They pushed out further and had Philly’s defenders on their heels, and capitalized within the first minute as Cristian Penilla’s toe poke pass saw Andrew Farrell blast it in out of Andre Blake’s reach, pulling the Revs back, 2-1. Then, after Picault goes into the book for a foul on Luis Caicedo, Diego Fagundez found Wilfried Zahibo’s noggin some 18 minutes later, equalizing and setting the Revolution up to potentially grab a point to keep the club in sixth.

Revs fall behind early, via Jack Elliot’s brace: Despite having a great deal of the ball in the first 15 minutes without truly cracking the Union back, it was Philadelphia scoring on its first concerted charge into the New England end. First, a corner saw Haris Medunjanin’s cross go to centerback Jack Elliot, playing up, as he hustled away from Zahibo and back-heeled the ball beyond Matt Turner in the 14th minute, putting the tourists from the City of Brotherly Love ahead by a goal to nil against the run of play. Six minutes later, the Revolution were just unlucky as Picault’s shot from outside of the box caromed off the frame and off Turner’s hand, right to Elliot for the tap-in. He was unmarked, Jalil Anibaba slow to react on that side.

Passing ineffective in latter third of opening 45: Other than some nice football at the top of the box at the half-hour mark, the Revolution’s passing was dreadful in all aspects late in the first half. Really, it wasn’t good. Passing behind their teammates. Passing with too heavy a touch out of reach. The halftime interval couldn’t come fast enough. But that changed once they kicked off to start the second half.


Picault had charged up through the channel, getting by Zahibo while Anibaba came up to supplement. Anibaba forced Picault to take a shot at a tough angle, a shot that Turner parried over the end line and set up Philly’s fifth and final corner of the night — and it turned into a dagger.


Andrew Farrell: Wearing the captain’s armband is a good thing for the University of Louisville product, as Farrell was in the perfect place at the most perfect time to take Penilla’s toe poke pass across the top of the box. Farrell charged in and drove a left-footer with plenty of power and pace behind it to beat Andre Blake and to get the Revs back into this one. He had a second opportunity to score a goal, this time on a Blake parry, but it went into The Fort.


Antonio Delamea: It wasn’t the smartest play, that’s for sure — and so much for what I wrote Friday about not being at the center of the Revs’ recent collapses. He had several good moves in the back to slow the Union down during the second half, but he will be remembered in this one most for the handle which inevitably took a hard-earned point away from New England — and pushed the Revs below the red line for the first time all season.

Wilfried Zahibo: This may be unfair given that he scored the equalizer, and seriously… who thought that Jack Elliot would score two goals, let alone one. But Big Wilf should have marked Elliot tighter on the first goal. Even if you’re not expecting the ball to go to a centerback, you still need to keep your mark and stay on him just in case the unthinkable occurs.


If Andrew Farrell keeps up this scoring thing he has going on this year, he may find himself up alongside Diego Fagundez on the right-hand side of a 4-2-3-1 attack than in the back.


“Today, this game was on me. I can only say sorry to everyone. In situations like this, you have to take the responsibility to put your head down and work even harder.”
-- Antonio Delamea


The Revs will make the trip to our nation’s capital next weekend, and it’s a Sunday match to boot: New England gets its first look at DC United’s Audi Field, and the first time they’ll take on English star Wayne Rooney. That’s set for 6 p.m. We’ll see you then.