Gustavo Bou Opens Up 2023 Scoring Tab
“He [Bou] won us the game. He’s a special player. He’s someone who can be guarded the whole 90 or double-teamed and he gets free one time and he scores a goal."
Gustavo Bou is nicknamed La Pantera for a reason.
Similar to the feline, Bou can patiently wait to strike and once he does it is too late for his prey to react. His goal against Nashville SC proved just that.
Bou blasted a shot past Joe Willis in the 52nd minute of Saturday’s match which would prove to be the game winner for New England. There was nothing that Willis could do. By the time the shot came off of Bou’s foot, it was too late.
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On a night where Carles Gil was out due to injury and Giacomo Vrioni didn’t come onto the field until the 65th minute, Bou put the team on his back and gave the Revolution their first win over Nashville in club history.
“[It was] good. His [Bou] best performance this year,” head coach and sporting director Bruce Arena said. “Obviously, he’s going to get better each game as he builds on his fitness, but that was a great goal. He had a couple of other chances, and he gave us a real good effort.”
Part of the reason for Bou’s change of fortune could be a slight tactical tweak. Instead of playing as the No. 10, Bou played up top and looked a lot better.
On top of his goal, Bou also had 46 touches and won six of his eight total duels. His movement was impressive and he was the best player on the pitch for New England.
Bou said he felt a lot more comfortable playing as a striker compared to playing as a CAM against LAFC.
“I think I felt more comfortable. In the last game in Los Angeles, I didn’t play a position that my characteristics are know for,” Bou said. “I tried to do my best for the team in that place that Carles [Gil] usually occupies. The coaches were confident in me. Personally, I didn’t feel good. I didn’t feel like I was great for the team, but my mentality was to give it my best for the coaches and for my teammates. I tried to do what I do best and tonight I felt more comfortable.”
Bou put the team on his back in a way that every Designated Player should strive for. Dave Romney has been impressed with Bou and credited the striker for winning the game on Saturday.
“He [Bou] won us the game,” Romney said. “He’s a special player. He’s someone who can be guarded the whole 90 or double-teamed and he gets free one time and he scores a goal. It’s just those kinds of players that you pay good money for and there are guys that can make a difference for the team. Without him we tied 0-0 tonight, so he’s just a special player and we’re lucky to have him. I think he played well. Outside of the goal too, a lot of guys played well. I think everyone on the team honestly has had a good game tonight and it showed.”
On a night when the Revolution needed Bou to show up, he did that in more. With Gil’s status remaining a question mark and Vrioni struggling to start 2023, New England will need the 33-year-old to perform night in and night out.