Saturday's season finale in Montreal won't have any bearing on where the ninth-place Revolution finish on the Eastern Conference table. None whatsoever.
Philadelphia hovers four points above them in eighth place, while Toronto sits nine points below in the 10th spot. So playing for table positions is out of question. The Revolution will finish right where they are right now, win, lose or draw.
But that doesn't mean Jay Heaps won't have any motivation material prepared for the club's stay in Montreal. Quite the opposite, in fact.
For starters, Heaps need only point to the team's previous pair of games against the expansion Impact. On July 18, Montreal midfielder/forward Sanna Nyassi -- twin brother of Revolution midfielder Sainey Nyassi -- terrorized the Revolution defense by drawing the foul to set up Patrice Bernier's 28th minute penalty strike before he did the dirty work on his own with a 67th minute goal. At the final whistle, the Impact pocketed a 2-1 win.
Nyassi reprised his goalscoring role for the rematch at Gillette Stadium on Aug. 12. In a scoreless match through 60 minutes, Nyassi, who this time came off the bench, raced right into Revolution end and slipped it past Matt Reis to give the guests the only goal the Impact needed in a 1--0 victory.
The common link between the two clashes: the Revolution's curious lack of offense, especially when pitted against Montreal's porous defense. For Heaps, whose emphasis on the attack has never waned, Saturday's contest is one last chance to take advantage of the mistake-prone Impact.
Another topic for the Revolution to tackle on Saturday: drawing the curtains on their 13-game slide away from Gillette Stadium. Since their 3-1 win at Los Angeles on Mar. 31, the Revolution have gone a woeful 0-11-2. Clearly, it's a trend that Heaps would like to end before the final whistle blows on the regular season.
Lastly, there's the unavoidable truth that Saturday's finale may be the final opportunity for a few players on the Revolution team sheet to make an impression. Granted, Heaps has probably made the bulk of his personnel decisions by now. However, the possibility remains that the game-day 18 will feature a few names that will need to put forth a strong showing in order to punch a return ticket for the preseason.
As far as the standings and playoff race are concerned, Saturday's game is a fruitless affair. Not only is New England locked into the ninth spot, but Montreal won't be escaping seventh place. So there's no room for advancement for either side. And the playoff train the left the station for both clubs quite some time ago.
Yet, for the Revolution, who enter Saturday's season finale with a sizable chip on their shoulder, there's still plenty to play for once referee Jorge Gonzalez sets his watch for the final 90 minutes of the season.