The New England Revolution had an opportunity to go eight games unbeaten, but they fell just short. Much of the post-match discussion in New England is around the decision-making of the match officials. Among all of this, Latif Blessing was sent off to New York as his Revs career continues to deteriorate…
Latif Blessing is Sent Off to the Big Apple
Coping Without Carles
The absence of Revs skipper Carles Gil was the biggest question heading into this game. There has to be another alteration to the XI that drew with FC Cincinnati last weekend, in addition to Ben Sweat replacing Ryan Spaulding. Esmir Bajraktarevic, 18, was chosen to replace Gil, and a system change occurred as well.
Bruce Arena was pretty blasé about the Gil suspension before the match, and he maintained a similarly straightforward demeanor thereafter. “In every sport, your team is better when your best player is on the field. So we won’t have the same level of quality when Carles isn’t on the field.”
Ian Harkes made his much-awaited debut for the Revolution after joining from SPFL side Dundee United last week. The former D.C. United player appeared to be up to speed with everything, but his performance will be remembered for the Red Bulls’ second goal.
Winkelman Carmona had his strike deflect off Michael Harkes on its way beyond the reach of Djordje Petrovic after Matt Polster gave the ball away. Bruce Arena reacted to his latest signing, Ian, who “did really well.” Unfortunately, he deflected that pass, allowing them to score their second goal, although he played quite well. That was very encouraging to see.” Harkes entered the game with 68 minutes remaining, just after Latif Blessing was sent off.
A Tough Night for Referees- Was the Dismissal of Latif Blessing Correct?
The arena isn’t one to hold back, and he made it clear after the final whistle when he met with the reporters. According to one of his quotes, “That’s the third time this year we’ve had a goal taken away due to a VAR interpretation.”
For all intents and purposes, it appeared that Andrew Farrell had equalized for the Revolution once more at the death. His low effort from a distance found the far post on its way in, sending the defender and his teammates into ecstasy. This euphoria, however, was short-lived as VAR intervened.
Coach Arena will provide his interpretation once more. “Because a Red Bull player deflected the ball, the goal should have counted.” That’s my take on it. Vrioni was accused of tampering with the goalkeeper. “I believe the goal should be allowed because the Red Bull player deflected the ball.”
I mean, Latif Blessing isn’t a dirty player. But he did just get his boot up to the guy’s pelvic bone studs showing. I can live with that as red https://t.co/fVbGqwrixf
— Matthew De George (@sportsdoctormd) July 9, 2023
This wasn’t the only notable decision, as midfielder Latif Blessing was sent off for a high boot on the goal scorer only moments after Frankie Amaya put the hosts ahead. Arena disagreed with this one as well, although he was in the minority, and the Ghanaian’s dismissal can be viewed as a little snub. “Latif’s red was quite soft.” Nothing should surprise you when you see the game that referee had.”
From one suspension to the next, as Gil’s debatable yellow card for diving is followed by Latif Blessing’s very understandable red card. The Revs put in a horrible effort, and while there will be disputes over the officiating, it simply wasn’t good enough.