Columbus, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Juan Agudelo's 28th-minute goal was enough to help the New England Revolution secure its first playoff berth in four seasons with a 1-0 win at the Columbus Crew on Sunday.
New England entered the day needing a win to assure the team of a postseason berth, and Agudelo's goal after a nice one-two with Lee Nguyen was enough as goalkeeper Matt Reis and the rest of the Revolution back line made it hold up.
Columbus started the match as the stronger side and generated a few chances in the opening five minutes before Jairo Arrieta sent a 30-yard shot just inches wide of the post in the 27th minute for the Crew.
But only one minute later, New England scored against the run of play after a clever one-two between Agudelo and Nguyen saw the striker take the return pass and slot his shot past goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum.
Bernardo Anor came close to equalizing on the stroke of halftime with a volley that ended up on top of the net, while the Revs were unable to net a second goal to give themselves some breathing room.
The Crew was pushing for an equalizer as the match wound down, but forward Dominic Oduro was sent off in the 90th minute for a reckless foul on Kelyn Rowe, and the visitors were able to see out the final eight minutes of stoppage time to continue their season.