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As Adam wrote earlier in the week, things are looking pretty grim for the Revolution right now. And while it may, in fact, be time to punt this season and start looking toward next year, I’d like to propose four things the Revs could do right now to salvage their 2010 campaign: (more…)

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With the Revs and the rest of MLS on break for another week before the end of the World Cup group stage, now seems like as good a time as any to discuss an issue not specifically related to the 2010 Revolution season. I’m talking, of course, about the long-term possibility — some might say necessity — of a soccer-specific stadium in New England.

There are two sets of reasons for an MLS team to build the big Triple-S. One is pure aesthetics: soccer is best played in a stadium designed for it, with the appropriate size and shape and fan-experience. The other group of reasons is financial: A team that owns its own stadium controls more of its gameday revenue than a team that rents its space from another entity. This second set is the reason I suspect we won’t see the Revs moving out of Gillette Stadium any time soon.

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By Ian Holliday

Cross-posted at Po-Tee-Weet?

It’s been a while since my last column for 6S1B, partly due to the fact that I was out of the country from May 29 to June 8. But now I’m back, and I’d like to talk about my experience staying at the Taizé Community as they relate to the 2010 World Cup and soccer’s position as the greatest sport in the world.

Without going into too much detail, Taizé is a small village in France about 100 km north of Lyon. It’s famous for the monastic community that welcomes 17 to 29 year-olds to join them in prayer, work, and discussion groups year-round. Most people go for one week at a time, from Sunday to Sunday, which is what I did.

This was my second trip to Taizé, and one of my favorite parts of the experience this year was meeting people from all over the world and talking soccer with them. In my time at Taizé I met a Mexican who had been in Germany for a 2005 Confederations Cup match against Greece, a Canadian who was unaware his nation even fielded a team (we had a good laugh about the 2010 Olympic Men’s Hockey Final though), a Portuguese-born French citizen who promised to support his country of birth if it came up against his country of residence, and several Germans who were surprised to find an American who could name more than one player (Michael Ballack) on their team.

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by Adam Vaccaro

As the Revolution are now 1/3 of the way through their MLS campaign and the blog a bit slow of late, I figured I’d throw together an assessment of the team’s individual players through the season’s first segment. The grades and assessments are based only on MLS play.

The grades are also weighted – the players are in competition with one another here, not with the rest of the league and certainly not with the rest of the soccer universe. Brief tangent: I never understood teachers/professors that didn’t weight grades. If nearly everyone has a C, then the kid who has the C+ did best in the class. So he should get the A. Right? Maybe I took too competitive an approach to school, though that wouldn’t explain all the nights I put off papers and studying to engage in whatever inane activity was to be undergone instead…

Right then. Here are the grades in ascending order of quality, because it’s more fun to write about those with whom one or one’s readership is pleased.

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by Adam Vaccaro

On April 24, New England Revolution captain Shalrie Joseph took a leave of absence that cost him five league matches and seven overall. Few details were released, and fans immediately began speculating as to its reason. The odds were that Joseph had either suffered a serious family emergency, or he’d committed an atrocity.

Within a few days, Boston.com’s Frank Dell’Apa reported that Joseph was partaking in MLS’s Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health program. In his time away from the club during what actually proved to be a suspension, the Revolution went 0-3-2 and were clearly lacking in phases of the game to which Joseph added quite a bit.

But fans understood. Joseph was involved with some pretty bad stuff, they figured, and needed some help. Or worse yet, maybe he was using PEDs and in actuality really deserved the punishment.

Nope and nope. Guess what? It was pot. Yup. Pot. Pot cost Shalrie Joseph 5 MLS matches and, by extension, put the Revs in a pretty deep hole.

If I were a Revs fan, I would be furious. And not (entirely) with Shalrie.

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By Ian Holliday

Let’s be honest, there are a lot of reasons not to like the U.S. Open Cup. Whether you don’t like the format (Why do only eight MLS teams qualify?), or think it leads to schedule congestion (I bet Steve Nicol would prefer not to have to take his beleaguered Revs to New York tomorrow night.), or just don’t care about the tournament because MLS teams don’t seem to take it seriously (Admit it, it’s kind of hard to get excited about Bobby Shuttleworth in goal against the likes of Connor Chinn for the Red Bulls, although the latter did have a great game against Philly.), there are plenty of legitimate complaints to make about the Open Cup. While I don’t begrudge anyone their right to make such complaints, I have to say that, despite all its flaws, I love the U.S. Open Cup. And I think you should too.

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It’s been a rough start, but there are reasons to feel good about this Revs team.

By Ian Holliday

Last night’s 3-2 loss to Columbus was the Revolution’s eighth match of the season, which means the team has already played more than one quarter of its 2010 MLS schedule. Obviously, things haven’t gone exactly as planned for the Revs thus far. Seven points from eight matches puts the team on pace for a decidedly bad season, one that would end with the Revs out of the playoffs for the first time in 9 years. There are plenty of reasons to be pessimistic about this Revolution team: injuries, card suspensions, a general lack of quality — particularly in the midfield, and the inexperience of youth, to name a few. We all know what’s wrong, and we all have our ideas about how we’d like to fix it. That’s another column for another day (or perhaps, my first column from a week ago).

Today’s column is about what’s going right with this Revolution team, the optimistic take on this rough start.

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