Discover more from The Blazing Musket
Tommy McNamara Reflects on Journey to 1st Start of 2023
“It's been a very frustrating year to be honest. It is what it is sometimes that happens in a player’s career but I'm very happy to be back now and to be able to help the group."
It took until the final match of the season for Tommy McNamara to make his first start of the 2023 season. The road to get there was full of challenges for the New England Revolution midfielder.
Since joining New England, McNamara has been a major part of the club. He consistently featured in the starting XI and was an anchor of the midfield. Last season, McNamara appeared in 33 matches while earning 30 starts.
The Blazing Musket is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support our work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
The 2023 season was completely different. McNamara suffered a leg injury in preseason training camp and missed a large majority of the 2023 campaign. The midfielder was able to make his first appearance on September 2nd against Austin FC and has featured off the bench on occasion.
McNamara opened up about the path to his first start and discussed what he learned while on the sidelines.
“It's been a very frustrating year to be honest,” the MLS veteran said. “It is what it is sometimes that happens in a player’s career but I'm very happy to be back now and to be able to help the group. I wouldn't say I learned it, but it was just kind of another reminder again it's been a long time since I dealt with injury. Last time I was injured was my rookie season. Just to take advantage of every opportunity and to make the most of it. It was just a reminder that things could get cut short at any moment and just to make the most of everything that you're doing in the moment.”
Against the Union, McNamara put in a solid shift. The midfielder completed 40 of his 49 passes while recording 54 touches and five passes into the final third.
Interim head coach Clint Peay was happy with the midfielder’s performance on the night.
“Yeah, I mean, we haven't performed collectively as a group, and I think we wanted to make some changes to try to see if we could be a better group collectively,” Peay stated. “You know, what's the right mix? And so Tommy [McNamara] played well coming in last game in the second half and so we wanted to reward him for that and see how it would work out tonight and I thought he had another good game, steady.”
Adding a veteran midfielder such as McNamara to the mix heading into the postseason will be a boost to New England. He is a calming presence in the midfield and his experience could pay dividends for the Revolution.