The majority of the focus in Major League Soccer is around the on-field action. The New England Revolution may be flying high at the summit but there is a new face in town making headlines too. Former Sporting Kansas City and NYCFC defender Ben Sweat has been added to the Revolution ranks.
Bruce Arena Brings Ben Sweat Onboard
All About the New Arrival
Ben Sweat is a league veteran who has played in a number of different cities. He played for his college team, the South Florida Bulls, in his home state. After playing for a couple of lower-tier teams, his break in MLS came in Ohio with the Columbus Crew.
Sweat has been quite the journeyman and his only stay of any notable length was in the big apple. He joined New York City FC in 2017 and spent three seasons there, in two of which his team reached the playoffs. More recently, the 31-year-old has represented Inter Miami and SKC with a very brief stint at Austin FC in between.
His deal in Kansas City was waived earlier this month, allowing the Revs and Bruce Arena to sweep in and pick him up. It didn’t seem to end all that well between Sweat and the club and here is what he had to say about that. “As for how it ended with Sporting, I don’t want to get in to too much detail with that. There’s two sides to every story and I’ll leave it at that.”
Welcome Ben Sweat
— New England Revolution (@NERevolution) April 18, 2023
He may not have reached dizzy heights with the US Men’s National Team but Ben Sweat did make two appearances for his country. Dave Sarachan was the interim manager at the time and he brought Sweat into the fold. South American duo Columbia and Peru were the opponents for his spell in the stars and stripes jersey.
Where Will Ben Sweat Fit In?
The move for Ben Sweat came out of the blue in truth, which further begs the question as to where he fits into the Revolution’s system. Brandon Bye and DeJuan Jones are the current fullbacks and they are integral to the success of this team, going both ways. Sweat spoke about the two defenders with the media as follows.
“DeJuan [Jones] and Brandon Bye, they like to get forward, they like to get crosses off and get into the attack and that’s something that’s always been a part of my game, so I’m happy to bring that to the table.”
Sweat’s experience will be immeasurably valuable both on and off of the field, something which every team needs. In his own words: “I bring experience, I bring leadership, I’m a really good guy in the locker room and then on the field, I fit their style.”
— New England Revolution (@NERevolution) April 23, 2023
We often here players that move to New England wax lyrical about what Bruce Arena has done for this league and what he continues to do. That is no different with Sweat as he makes the move to Foxborough. “He’s obviously a tremendous coach, and I was excited when he called me up and told me they’re bringing me here, and I think I’m going to be really, really happy here with him.”
Arena himself also spoke on the move and outlined, very clearly, how Ben Sweat fits into his squad. “He obviously comes in as a backup at the moment, but there are going to be times that he’s going to be playing regularly as well.” The most ironic part of it is that his first game for the Revs came against his former employers, SKC, something which he labelled as a “funny situation.”
Featured image credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports: taken Mar 4, 2023.