An early injury to defender Stephen McCarthy became a nail in the coffin of the New England Revolution Saturday night at Gillette Stadium.
Toronto FC quickly pounced on a misshapen Revolution back four to walk away with a 1-0 victory following a harsh concussion to McCarthy two minutes in.
Midfielder Shalrie Joesph was quickly brought off the bench to replace McCarthy and the overall shape of the team was tested,
"I think the injury hurt us," said midfielder Clyde Simms. "We are never ready for a substitution that early in the game, and we have had a lot of continuity with our back four. So I think that threw us off a little bit, and there was a little bit of an adjustment period, switching things around and unfortunately they got the goal in that adjustment period."
Toronto created a goal against a dismantled back line at the top of the New England box in the 8th minute courtesy of Luis Silva. From that point on the Revolution struggled to find decent attempts in the final third.
The early sub created a large hole in the New England game plan and the adjustment could not be found on the field,
"It’s a tough one getting hit like that. Hit with an early sub early really changes what you need to do the rest of the game and how you utilize your subs,” said New England coach Jay Heaps. “The shape at the end got too narrow. They packed it in and we couldn’t break them down wide. Credit them. They defended all their set pieces well and we had a lot of them. They did a nice job on all the crosses.”
Heaps was less then enthused about the lack of flow to the game from New England.
“The game never found rhythm," he said. "It was shameful, to be honest. The game just got stopped and stopped and stopped and stopped, and we just felt like we could never get a rhythm.”
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