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Ian Harkes Makes "Encouraging" New England Revolution Debut
“[Harkes] did real well. Unfortunately, he deflected that ball for their second goal, but he played really well. It was really encouraging to see.”
While it was a disappointing night for the New England Revolution, there is at least one positive to take away from the match. Recently acquired Ian Harkes made his debut for New England off the bench.
Harkes played 22 minutes against the New York Red Bulls and recorded 15 touches while also completing nine of his 12 passes. Beyond the stats, a deflection off of Harkes led to the game-winning goal for the Red Bulls.
While those stats might not leap off the page, head coach and sporting director Bruce Arena was pleased with Harkes performance.
“[Harkes] did real well. Unfortunately, he deflected that ball for their second goal, but he played really well,” Arena said. “It was really encouraging to see.”
With Harkes promising performance and Latif Blessing being sent off with a straight red card, it wouldn’t be surprising if the former Dundee United man gets his first start at home against Atlanta United on Wednesday.
With the acquisition of Harkes, a player such as Blessing is on the hot seat. If his poor play continues and Harkes starts to excel, the MLS veteran could be relegated to the bench.
So while Harkes didn’t light up the pitch on Saturday evening against the Red Bulls — with two matches next week — the 28-year-old could very well enter the starting XI and receive a heavy dose of minutes.