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2021 Season Preview: New England Revolution II

By CAMERON KOUBEK -, 04/13/21, 12:15PM EDT


New England Revolution II
New England Revolution II

Revs II showed flashes of brilliance last season, and were the only League One side to defeat all three of Greenville, Omaha and Richmond in 2020 / Photo courtesy New England Revolution II

2021 Outlook

During its inaugural League One season in 2020, the young New England Revolution II squad got off to a slow start before putting together one of the season’s highlights - a four-game win streak in September and October which saw Revs II defeat both Union Omaha and the Richmond Kickers. The team also beat Greenville Triumph SC at Gillette Stadium in July, one of just three teams to defeat the eventual title-winners last season.

Standouts Collin Verfurth, Jon Bell, and Maciel all signed with the New England Revolution’s First Team in Major League Soccer during the offseason, but plenty of talent remains. Goalkeeper Joe Rice compiled the fourth-most saves in League One last season and should once again feature between the sticks, while Connor Presley, Ryan Spaulding and Tiago Mendonca will also return. Haitain youth international Francois Dulysse is an intriguing addition to a defensive unit which Head Coach Clint Peay will be looking to tighten up this season.

Notable Arrivals

  • Francois Dulysse, Defender: Haitian youth international and USL League Two standout with Treasure Coast Tritons and Portland Timbers U-23.

  • Marzuq Puckerin, Goalkeeper: Massachusetts native, Atlanta United Academy graduate and U.S. youth national team player.

  • Jake Rozhansky, Midfielder: Made 83 professional appearances across the top three divisions in Israel.

Notable Departures

  • Maciel, Midfielder: Signed with New England Revolution first team.

  • Jon Bell, Defender: Signed with New England Revolution first team.

  • Collin Verfurth, Defender: Signed with New England Revolution first team.

Two To Watch

Joe Rice, Goalkeeper

Rice enjoyed an excellent season between the posts for New England in 2020. He made 45 saves, the fourth-most in League One, and kept three clean sheets. One of those saves, an incredible back-pedaling effort against Forward Madison, earned him the Fans’ Choice Save of the Year award. His command of his area is impressive for a young goalkeeper, and he has a high ceiling for continued improvement entering his second season with the Revolution II.


Tiago Mendonca, Midfielder

Mendonca showcased his ability in New England’s 4-0 demolition of the Richmond Kickers at City Stadium last season. The Portuguese midfielder did yeoman’s work that day, leading his side with five clearances and winning possession 12 times to earn a spot on League One’s Team of the Week for Week 12. If he can continue to produce similar performances, he could very well be due for a breakout campaign for the Revolution II in 2021.


Clint Peay (2nd season)

Peay enjoyed a playing career in Major League Soccer before entering the coaching ranks. He spent time coaching college soccer and within the U.S. youth national team setup before becoming an assistant at North Carolina FC. Ahead of the Revolution II’s first season in League One last year, Peay was hired to lead the squad, and did a good job creating a cohesive unit with the talented but inexperienced players at his disposal. He shares a connection with Revolution first team Head Coach Bruce Arena, who coached Peay in college at the University of Virginia.

Key Number

21.5 The average age of players on the Revolution II roster at the time of writing. It’s one of the youngest squads in League One, and as you’d expect, that led to some inconsistency of performance last year. But despite a ninth-place finish in 2020, this team was not easy to beat, as Greenville, Omaha and Richmond found out the hard way. Now that some of New England’s players will be together for the second consecutive season, that bit of extra experience might make facing them an even tougher task.

Possible Lineup

4-4-2: J. Rice; C. Quinones, S. O'Hearn, F. Dulysse, R. Spaulding; C. Presley, T. Mendonca, J. Rozhansky, H. Fujiwara; M. Silva, R. Sierakowski

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