By KEVIN KOCZWARA
Matt Reis came out of his net in a last-ditch effort to keep the ball in play and keep the New England Revolution’s playoff dream alive. But after taking a touch and trying to find a way to play the ball out, the 38-year-old goalkeeper crumpled to the field at Sporting Park clutching his leg. His game was over and his amazing season had come to a sad end. Reis limping off the field with help and the Revolution bowing out of the playoffs 4-3 on aggregate to Sporting Kansas City.
On Monday, Reis had surgery on his left quadriceps tendon, which was injured in stoppage time in the Revs game against Sporting Kanas City on Nov. 6. Head team physician Dr. Scott Martin performed the quadriceps tendon repair on Reis at Brigham and Women’s/Mass General Health Care Center in Foxborough, Mass.
Rehabilitation is expected to last five to seven months, which has the Revolution’s long-time goalkeeper thinking about his future as a player. He told reporters he will have to have a discussion with his family, the coaching staff and the front office before a final decision is made.
“A lot of question marks; a lot of tough decisions have to be made one everybody’s part,” Reis told reporters on Saturday morning. “We’ll have to see what happens moving forward, but if I did play my last game, then I’m happy with my performance. I’m happy with the fact that I did leave it all on the field and I was able to walk off the field with my head held high.”
Reis told reporters the decision will come down to if he can continue to contribute in a meaningful way after rehab.
“I don’t want to just come out here and go through the motions. I want to still be able to play at the level I’ve been playing at and that’s to be seen if I will get that opportunity to do it,” Reis said. “It’s such a long recovery that it’s going to be a difficult decision for the organization as to what where’re doing going forward.”
Here are some more notes from Revolution training:
AGUDELO SET FOR STOKE JOURNEY
Juan Agudelo’s time in New England was short, but it was something he will remember.
“It was extremely fun to [play] with all these young and motivated guys,” Agudelo told reporters on Saturday. “It was fun to go that far and to be an underdog to go that far [in the playoffs].”
Next up for Agudelo is a trip to the English Premier League where he will join fellow Americans Geoff Cameron and Brek Shea at Stoke City. The 20-year-old forward signed a pre-contract agreement with Mark Hughes’ side earlier this year and will join the team in January after his contract with the New England Revolution and Major League Soccer expires. But before he joins, Hughes has told Agudelo to rest up after the long season he just had with the Revolution.
“Right now, Mark Hughes, the coach for Stoke, said that it’s really important for me to have a break and not play two seasons because he doesn’t want me to burn out towards the beginning of the summer or towards the end of their season, which is something that happened to Geoff Cameron,” Agudelo said.
According to Agudelo, there is no set time for him to join up with Stoke and he is still waiting for word on the status of his work permit. Reports in England say that a hearing for his permit will happen next month.
JOSE GONCALVES WANTS TO RETURN TO NEW ENGLAND
It didn’t take long for Jose Goncalves to endear himself to the Revolution’s locker room and make his presence known on the field. Goncalves’ was named the club’s captain despite being on loan this year from Swiss club FC Sion and became the team’s stalwart defender that lead one of the best defenses in MLS. And despite his loan deal expiring at the end of the season the Portuguese defender has expressed an interest in returning.
“I’m looking to the next year for my future,” Goncalves told the media on Saturday morning. “Of course, if there is a good option for me to be back here next year I will be here, there is no doubt. I think I enjoyed my first year here, my family too.”
Goncalves didn’t miss a minute for New England this year and he enjoyed himself enough that if the Revs and FC Sion can reach an agreement then he’d like to be back leading the Revs again.
“If there is a chance to come back I will not think twice [about it]. It will be a priority,” Goncalves said.
What do you think of these notes? Do you see Reis returning next season? What do you expect to see from Agudelo at Stoke? Do you see Goncalves equaling his performance from this season next year?
Share your thoughts below.