Nashville SC 1, New England Revolution 1 | 2020 MLS Match Recap
Walker Zimmerman and Adam Buksa traded goals within three minutes in an active second half to transform a tense, scoreless draw into a nearly-as-tense, 1-1 draw between Nashville SC and New England Revolution at Nissan Stadium on Friday night.
When things got underway after a weather-induced delay of just over an hour prior to the game, the first half was largely about Nashville holding a defensive position in a 3-5-2 formation against New England trying to break it. While the Revs had 65 percent of the possession, they equaled Nashville 3-3 in shots in the first 45 mintues. The Revs did, however, net the best chance of the half though, with relative newcomer Tommy McNamara getting off a 37th-minute shot that tested MLS clean sheet leader Joe Willis.
The Revs continued to take the match to Nashville in the second half, and in the 62nd minute, made an audacious sub to break the game open, bringing on Carles Gil for his first action since July. Nashville made its own splashy sub, bringing in new DP Jhonder Cadiz, who got his first MLS goal Tuesday in a win over FC Dallas.
Several minutes after the Cadiz sub, after several dangerous but fruitless corner kick chances, Nashville was able to deliver, with Randall Leal sending a well-weighted corner kick that Zimmerman was able to head home. But then, less than three minutes later, it was Buksa — another second-half sub, answering by receiving a pass around the 18, and despite three Nashville defenders converging on him, firing in the equalizer.
- THE BIG PICTURE: This result suited both teams decently: New England remain in the thick of the East race even as a top-four position seems to slip away, while Nashville have results in seven of their last eight matches to further solidify their playoff positioning.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Though Zimmerman had a dramatic goal celebration, it proved premature, and Buksa clawing the Revs back to a draw with his effort was not only the best moment, but the moment that brought the draw that best suited both sides' efforts the match.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Though he only had a relatively short run-out as a sub, Buksa was able to penetrate a stifling Nashville defense — though you might also consider Gil for his sub turn, coming sooner-than-expected after an injury that might have sidelined him to the end of the regular season.