Viva Valencia! Metros win opener on late goal
April 7, 2001

2:1
MetroStars New England
Mathis
Valencia
Alvarez
04.07.01 · League

For the first time in their six-year history, the Metros opened at home. And for the first time in those six years, they opened with a 3-point win, downing New England 2:1 in front of over 30,000 fans.

The Metros came out in a very attacking 3-4-3 formation, with Clint Mathis playing behind the front-running duo of Alex Comas and Adolfo Valencia. The attacking experiment was short-lived, as Comas was pulled out in the 28th minute with a sprained knee, being replaced by newcomer Pedro Alvarez.

The Metros controlled the play throughout the first half and most of the early second, but to no avail. Finally, in the 61st minute, Clint Mathis struck a free kick that deflected off Andy Williams and landed in the back of the New England goal for a 1:0 lead.

The Revs pressed on, taking over the run of play. Their persistence paid off in a goal after Tim Howard, making his first start as a true No. 1, collided with Johnny Torres, letting in the equalizer.

It looked like the teams were destined for overtime, but two minutes into stoppage time, Mathis found Mark Chung, who blasted a shot of the cross bar. With goalkeeper Jeff Causey out of position, Valencia calmly dropped to knock the ball with his head into the empty net, giving the Metros a deserved 2:1 victory.

Lineup: Howard, Petke, Hernandez, Jolley, Chung, Williams, Ramos, Villegas, Mathis, Comas, Valencia. Subs: Alvarez.

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