The New England Revolution have more draws than anyone else in MLS. They have hung with opponents in just about every game, but they haven’t had that extra umph to push them over the edge. It’s usually not the easiest thing to pick out one individual aspect of a team and say that that is the problem. But with New England, it is easy.
They don’t have a reliable, healthy striker. Teal Bunbury and Juan Agudelo have struggled leading the line for New England. Meanwhile, Charlie Davies would be a great option, but he can’t stay healthy.
Kei Kamara solves literally everything. New England’s midfielders, Diego Fagundez, Kelyn Rowe, and Lee Nguyen are all creative minded midfielders that have no problem picking out the key pass or sending in a probing cross. They’ve just had no one to connect with it.
Consider the match against Portland. New England hung with Portland, although it did take an own goal to force a draw. Regardless, New England maintained 64% of the possession, one of the most dominant displays of possession in MLS this year. Yet somehow they only put two shots on target. None of which came from the striker position.
That is problem No. 1.
Problem No. 2 is the amount of crosses that New England attempted. 35 crosses attempted. Only ten found their attempted target. Again, part of this problem comes down to the striker. They weren’t latching onto the crosses.
Enter Kei Kamara.
Nearly half of Kei Kamara’s attempted shots come from his head. The same holds true for the goals that he has scored. The same holds true with last year, as Kamara scored ten of his 25 goals with his head. That’s no fluke. Kamara is the best aerial threat in MLS.
For lack of a better cliche, Kamara is the missing piece of the New England puzzle. They need a clinical striker that can put in all the chances that Rowe, Fagundez and Nguyen pour into the box.
Someone had to capitalize on the internal ruckus going on at Columbus. There aren’t many teams out there that couldn’t find room for someone with the skill set of Kei Kamara. However, there are few teams out there that needed someone like Kamara more than the Revolution.
New England have a lot of pieces in place. Adding Kamara overloads this offense with weapons. They were staying afloat with just midfield goal production alone. Now that those midfielders have a striker, it’s game on.