New England vs. New York: Winners and Losers from MLS Playoff Game

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistNovember 29, 2014

New England vs. New York: Winners and Losers from MLS Playoff Game

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    The New England Revolution advanced to the MLS Cup Final with a 2-2 draw at home against the New York Red Bulls Saturday. The result handed New England the series victory on a 4-3 aggregate. 

    Charlie Davies was the main star for the Revolution, as he provided a brace in between New York goals scored by Tim Cahill and Peguy Luyindula. 

    The Revolution, who are in the final for the fifth time in franchise history, will play either the Seattle Sounders or LA Galaxy on the road on December 7.

    Here's a look at the winners and losers from the Eastern Conference Final second leg.

Winner: Charlie Davies

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    Davies scored two of the most meaningful goals of his career Saturday to put the Revolution back in the MLS Cup Final for the first time since 2007. 

    His first goal in the 42nd minute wasn't pretty by any means, but he was able to get the final touch on a Chris Tierney cross to level the game at 1-1. 

    In the 70th minute, Davies linked up with Tierney again, as the forward nodded home a splendid cross from the left-footed defender to hand the Revolution a one-goal lead on aggregate.

    Davies now has four goals in the playoffs, which is a big step forward for a player who suffered a major career setback in 2009 when he was involved in a career-threatening car accident.

Loser: Ambroise Oyongo

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    Six days after having a rough day at Red Bull Arena, Ambroise Oyongo once again showed he isn't quite ready for the big occasion. 

    Oyongo, who started at left-back due to the suspension of Roy Miller, was torched on the wing on countless occasions throughout the first half. 

    His weak performance forced manager Mike Petke into a public criticism of the defender during his half-time interview with NBCSN's Kyle Martino (h/t Thomas Floyd of Goal USA). 

    Oyongo did not do much to help himself in the second half, which brings up the conversation about how dumb Miller's red card in the second leg of the Eastern Conference Semifinal was. 

Winner: Bobby Shuttleworth

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    New England goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth made two key plays in the second half to keep the Red Bulls from scoring their third away goal. 

    In the 74th minute, Shuttleworth was forced to tap out a header from Ibrahim Sekagya. If he had failed to get a clean touch on the ball, it would have curled into the top left corner of the net. 

    The 27-year-old also came up big in the 88th minute, when he came off his line to collect an incoming cross from Cahill. Shuttleworth had to get his hands on the ball, as Red Bulls striker Thierry Henry was ready to pounce on a mistake. 

    If Shuttleworth had not made a clean play on Cahill's cross, Henry would have easily put home the game-winning goal for the visitors.

Loser: Tim Cahill

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    Cahill scored an impressive goal at the World Cup on a volley, but he could not replicate the same fireworks in the 66th minute. 

    The Australian, who opened the scoring in the 26th minute, got on the end of a Henry cross, but skied his volleyed effort high over the bar. 

    Cahill's golden opportunity in front of goal was the best chance the Red Bulls had after they scored their second goal. If the Australian had finished the shot off cleanly, it would have killed any momentum the Revolution had. 

    Instead, he sent his shot high. And just five minutes later, Davies scored the eventual series-clinching goal.

Winner: Chris Tierney

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    We all know that Tierney carries a terrific left foot to the pitch with him, and he was given a golden chance to showcase his talents with a start on the left side of the New England midfield. 

    The normal left-back for the Revolution sent in two terrific crosses to set up both Revolution goals scored in front of the home crowd at Gillette Stadium. 

    On the first strike by Davies, Tierney played a give-and-go with Lee Nguyen off a short corner before he laced the ball into a melee in the box. 

    His second assist of the night was a tremendous pass that connected perfectly with the head of Davies in the box. 

    Without Tierney's left foot, the Revolution may not be heading to the West Coast to play in the December 7 MLS Cup Final. 

Winner: Thierry Henry

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    If this was Henry's last professional game, he went out with a spectacular performance despite coming out on the losing end. 

    The French legend did everything possible to put the Red Bulls into the championship match, but it just wasn't enough. 

    He earned his fifth assist of the postseason on Cahill's opener, as he played a perfect ball to the chest of his teammate. 

    Without the contributions of Henry, the Red Bulls would have continued their tradition of early exits in the postseason.

    Although nothing has been confirmed yet in regards to his playing status, it has been widely speculated that his professional career will end after this season. 

    In five seasons with the Red Bulls, Henry scored 51 goals and had 42 assists in the regular season. He also had one goal and seven assists in postseason action. 

    Follow Joe on Twitter @JTansey90


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