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Three Things We Learned against New England with Ian Joy

Patrick Vieria is open to change 

I was incredibly surprised when Patrick Vieira made his team selection to see that Jason Hernandez had dropped out of the starting 11 and in came Ronald Matarrita. Matarrita was not really the surprise as he has been a key player since his return from Copa America duty and in fine form so when he is fit in my opinion he has to play,

The surprise came with Jason Hernandez dropping out of the starting 11 and Jefferson Mena keeping his place. Yes, Mena has played better in the previous two games vs Seattle and the Red Bulls but I fully expected Hernandez to come straight back in. The move could have proven costly as Mena started the game in a nervous fashion, a few loose passes and losing his marker a couple of times when the Revs really should have scored. However, I must admit as the game went on Mena calmed down, he defended really well especially in the 2nd half and his pace is really important along that back line.  

 

Hard work pays off 

How many times have we walked away from a game disappointed that the team didn't close out a game or failed to take the 3 points -- too many for my liking, well the luck has started to swing around in our favor! Why is that? Who knows exactly why? Maybe it's the Soccer Gods looking down on us or maybe it is the reward for the incredible amount of hard work the players, coaches and staff have been putting into bringing this club success!

If there is a player in the team who deserves good fortune it has to be Frank Lampard. We certainly did see some flashes of his brilliance last season and then injury struck again, keeping him out of the lineup for such a long time. As a former player I can tell you that injury is the most difficult part of the game to deal with. All you can do is watch on as the players try to win games until you finally get back healthy and can have an impact on the field. That time has arrived for Frank and I don't think it could have arrived at a more important time for the Club and the fans. 

Just like the goal against Seattle, Lampard’s goal vs New England was a little fortunate, Maybe Frank will claim that he redirected his thigh to angle the ball into the net, but all good players will say so. I think there was an element of luck in the goal. Take nothing at all away from Frank for it being redirected off him into the back of the Revolution goal, but I have to admit it is so refreshing to see that type of luck happening to such a wonderful player and personality like Frank. His presence on the field, in the locker room and around the city is being felt. Frank Lampard is back and he could be the key to success for the club this season. 

 

There Is Still Room For Improvement

There is still a lot of work to be done with this team and a lot of room for improvement from certain players. I really don't think there is a better man to be in charge of this particular squad of players than Patrick Vieira. Patrick still claims there is room for improvement from his players and we all have to believe that there is more to come. 

With a slow start to the New England game could have seen the team a goal down early in the match. Simple mistakes like an easy pass back to the goalkeeper going straight out of play, not blocking crosses from wide areas when we knew that New England were dangerous from Chris Tierney's left foot and the same goes for preventing corners kicks or set plays. Far too many times we gave them the chance to be dangerous.  

There is a certain consistency that the players have right now and we have to build on that and continue to get better, but I will admit that after every full time whistle I cannot wait for another New York City FC game to start because I know that I will be entertained and that is the reason we all love this game.

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