Winning without your “A-Game” is a trait that great teams have and it is something that the 2021 New England Revolution have shown on countless occasions. Whether it has been due to injuries or the busy international calendar driven by the COVID-19 pandemic the Revs have been able to persevere. At times this season the Revolution have been without Matt Turner, Tajon Buchanan, Henry Kessler, and most importantly Carles Gil. Currently, the club is eyeing a period where they will be without the services of Adam Buksa, Buchanan, and Turner.
Last year when the Revs lost Carles Gil due to injury they struggled to right the ship and stumbled in the process. In 2020 the Revs averaged 1.53 points per game without Gil but in 2021 they were able to achieve 2.00 points per game without Gil. Depth solves a lot of issues and thus far it has been the saving grace for the Revolution.
2021 Record Without Key Players:
Without Turner: 4-1-0, 2.40 PPG
Without Gil: 4-1-1, 2.16
Without Buchanan: 4-2-0, 2.00
This upcoming stretch where players will be participating in World Cup qualifiers will be critical for the Revolution to maintain their MLS leading point total. Being down Buksa and Buchanan makes the offense less volatile. So who is going to step in and step up? Carles Gil has been back in the United States and is back at Revs training. It is unclear how soon Gil can start but all signs are pointing towards the MLS MVP candidate being ready sooner rather than later. But when you think of depth it’s not going to be a player of Gil’s caliber.
Eyes should be on off-season acquisitions in Edward Kizza, Arnor Traustason, and Wilfrid Kaptoum. The trio has been lackluster in their performances on the field and are certainly in line for opportunities to prove their worth ahead of crunch-time matches in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
This wave of international departures does have Turner leaving again and a backline that is in a bit of disarray but help is on the horizon. Both Brandon Bye and Jon Bell are working their ways back from knocks. Matt Polster in the midfield is also working his way back from injury as well. The timing of their returns could be critical in ensuring the Revolution are able to hold their own defensively in the coming weeks without Matt Turner.