Gustavo Bou's goal is enough as New England beats Nashville

New England Revolution players celebrate after scoring a goal against Nashville in MLS.
New England Revolution players celebrate after scoring a goal against Nashville in MLS.
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Gustavo Bou scored his first goal of the season to lift the short-handed New England Revolution to a 1-0 victory over Nashville SC in Foxborough, Massachusetts, on Saturday night.

Bou's 38th MLS goal since joining New England (3-1-0, 9 points) in 2019 came on a night the Revs missed 2021 MLS MVP Carles Gil due to a leg injury. It came in Bou's second appearance of the season after he missed the first two matches while awaiting the completion of his green card application.

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Djordje Petrovic made three saves for New England, which became the first team to score on Nashville this season while preserving its third shutout.

Joe Willis stopped four shots for Nashville (2-1-1, 7 points), which has now failed to score in three all-time visits to New England. The previous two meetings finished as 0-0 draws.

After missing from a tight angle on the Revs' best opportunity of the first half, Bou scored from one to give New England the lead seven minutes into the second.

DeJuan Jones began the play with a run forward from his left back position and then played a pass in the direction of Bobby Wood, who let the ball run past him.

That allowed Bou to run onto the ball behind Nashville's back line while remaining onside. From there, he hammered a shot from the left side of the penalty area between Willis and the top left corner.

Bou came off in the 85th minute for defender Omar Gonzalez as New England sought to protect its lead. But increasing Nashville pressure rarely amounted to clear chances in those final stages.

Nashville enjoyed the better start, and Petrovic made saves on shots by Daniel Lovitz, Jacob Shaffelburg and Hany Mukhtar inside the opening 15 minutes.

In the 28th minute, Noel Buck picked out Bou on the right flank, but Bou missed his effort high and wide of the near post.

Then in the 35th, Nashville's Walker Zimmerman rattled the crossbar with a corner kick header.