New England Revolution Sporting Director and Head Coach Bruce Arena identified areas of need during the MLS is Back Tournament and addressed those concerns ahead of the MLS regular season re-start. On Monday the Revs announced a pair of transactions.
Transaction 1: Revs acquire forward/midfielder Kekuta Manneh from FC Cincinnati in exchange for a 2020 international roster slot. The slot returns to New England at the start of the 2021 calendar year.
Transaction 2: Revs acquire midfielder Tommy McNamara, $150k in 2020 GAM, and $25k in 2021 GAM in exchange for midfielder Wilfried Zahibo and a 2020 international roster slot. The slot will return at the start of 2021.
Manneh comes to the Revolution with seven years of MLS experience in addition to time in Mexico, Switzerland, and The Gambia. The 25-year-old has 149 MLS appearances, 87 of them starts. Finding the back of the net has been no problem for Manneh who has 30 goals and 18 assists. Thus far in 2020 he appeared in two matches for Cincy with just one start. Last year he appeared in 27 games for the first-year side.
“Kekuta is a player I’ve known for a number of years who can play a number of attacking positions, possesses good speed and quickness, and also has a solid goal-scoring record in our league,” said Sporting Director and Head Coach Bruce Arena. “I’m hopeful he can adjust quickly to our club and help strengthen our roster as we prepare for the last 18 games of the regular season.”
New England has been fairly putrid at finishing and adding a forward who knows how to play and score in MLS should give the coaching staff more options in the attacking third.
Former Brown University Standout Back In New England
As for McNamara, he is also in his seventh MLS season and last year he appeared in 33 matches with 15 starts. In his seven years in MLS, he has appeared in 129 matches with 89 starts and has also scored 16 goals and recorded 17 assists. He came into the league as the 20th overall pick in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft by the now-defunct Chivas USA.
“We are pleased to acquire Tommy McNamara as a member of the New England Revolution. I’d also like to thank Wilfried Zahibo for his contributions to our club and wish him the very best with the Houston Dynamo,” said Sporting Director and Head Coach Bruce Arena. “Tommy is a veteran player in our league who can play in a number of positions in the midfield. He is an intelligent player who will add a different dimension to our roster, and we look forward to welcoming him to the Revolution.”
Zahibo is departing the Revs after three seasons where he appeared in 58 matches, 41 starts, and scored five goals and tacked on five assists.
Both of these moves combined show that the Revolution are looking to get a little bit more dynamic on offense in the absence of Carles Gil.
New England will be back in MLS action this Thursday when they host the Philadelphia Union at 7:30 p.m.