MLS Revoultion Atlanta United Soccer

New England Revolution second-year forward Gustavo Bou tallied nine goals in 14 matches last season to finish fifth in the voting for MLS Newcomer of the Year.

FOXBORO — The next goal will be the best one for Gustavo Bou, whenever that may be.

“We’re all missing the continuity,” the New England Revolution’s prolific second-year player said during a conference call Wednesday as the Major League Soccer season is on a two-month hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 30-year-old Argentinian played all 90 minutes in both New England matches this season before the league-wide shutdown. The resumption of the 34-match season is presumptive at best.

“This is a team that finished well last season,” recalled Bou, who came to Foxboro last July and made an immediate impact by scoring nine goals in 14 matches, finishing fifth in the tabulation for the MLS Newcomer of the Year award.

“We’re a team that’s getting to know each other, we’re all missing the opportunity to go out and continue building a great team,” Bou said.

Bou was on the radar of New England head coach Bruce Arena before his arrival and transition from South American soccer. Bou was the first player that Arena signed when he took over the Revolution.

The terms of his “designated player” contract with MLS as an elite player made Bou well-compensated, reportedly $16 million over four years with a club record $7 million transfer fee paid to his former team, Tijuana.

“I feel comfortable here (Boston area), I like everything,” Bou said. “I came here last summer and experienced winter here too. There’s a lot to learn and do. I think that I adapted very well to different things. I’m trying to learn everything about the culture here.”

Bou and Carles Gil, another highly-skilled “designated player” with a multi-million dollar contract, converted New England into a contender for an MLS championship.

“I like everything about the Revolution, from the day I arrived here,” said Bou, who played 12 years of international pro soccer before arriving in Foxboro, where within a week, he had attended a Rolling Stones concert at Gillette Stadium.

“I was impressed with how beautiful the city (Boston) is and the surrounding areas, the people in the (Revolution) organization, my teammates,” Bou said. “I really enjoy playing at Gillette Stadium and seeing the fans. They give us a lot of positive energy.”

Bou has energy and electricity in his attacking style of play. In the Mexican League with Tijuana, Bou scored 21 goals over 55 matches.

Prior to that, his ability to score was evident with Argentina’s Racing Club, where he amassed 48 goals over 100 matches from 2014-17, scoring eight goals in the 2015 Copa Libertadores series.

Bou left home at age 14 to play in the River Plate program, making his professional debut at the age of 18. Since then, Bou scored 85 goals over a span of 280 pro career matches, also playing in Ecuador.

“I think they are both very good teams, it’s sort of the same, with different cultures,” Bou said in comparing New England with Racing, where he gained international notice. “The lifestyles are one of the differences I see. Each one has its fans. That doesn’t mean that one is better than the other.

“I really enjoy everything I’m learning here and everything I’ve experienced.”

Bou had a memorable first season with the Revolution, scoring in four straight matches from Aug. 10-31; with four goals in the 85th minute or later. He ranked fourth in MLS in shots and shots on target with one assist. He had taken seven shots over the first two matches for the Revolution this season.

“I have many goals that I put at the top of the list for different reasons,” Bou said. “Whether it was scored in a memorable game or something that helped us win a game and come closer to a championship. I’ve been lucky to score so many goals.”

Bou is anxious to resume from where the Revolution last took to the turf, at Gillette Stadium on March 7. Two months without training, without competitions is an eternity for him.

“We’re following all of the conditions from the health professionals,” Bou said.

He continues to train on his own while waiting for the state to allow the Revolution’s new facility in Foxboro to open its doors.

“When I enter the stadium and start playing games, that’s when I feel happy,” Bou said. “I had a dream that I’m living today. As one gets older and learns the game, it was a long difficult journey (from River Plate), that’s where the whole process started.

“At 14 years old, I moved away from my city, it was a difficult step for me. It took a lot of effort to reach that goal (First Team). My dreams and desires helped me reach that goal.

“I was pleased with the way I adapted (to New England and MLS), I’m happy here. I’m looking forward to getting back to normal. It’s a difficult time we’re all going through. We need to help each other, all around the world.”

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