The New England Revolution will be out to halt a seven-game losing streak on Saturday when the club welcomes the Columbus Crew to Gillette Stadium.
New England has not claimed a league point since a 2-1 defeat of D.C. United on May 24, a run that has dropped the club to fifth place in the Eastern Conference with 23 points.
Revs head coach Jay Heaps knows his team is in a tough spot, so he opted to give an upbeat response following the club's 2-0 defeat to FC Dallas last time out.
"I want to credit a good team. I think Dallas played well," Heaps said after the match. "They're a good team, but tonight, in terms of energy and effort, it was a great bounce back for us.
"We made one mistake in the first half, and we got punished for it. It was a quick free kick. Quite frankly, I didn't think it was a foul on our guy. It was a foul on their guy. The ball was moving, they played it quickly, credit (Adam) Moffat that played it, one ball through and then they stayed in that positive area. It was a good goal. There's a lot to be said, but we've got to keep fighting, keep going forward, and try to get back out of this."
New England has scored just three goals over its seven-game slide, but the club will be buoyed by the return of striker Charlie Davies, who made his first MLS start since 2011 in the defeat to Dallas.
"I was very excited to finally get an opportunity to help the team try and get out of this rut and showcase what I can do," the Revs forward said. "It was one of those times where I feel like I've worked so hard to prepare myself for this moment, and I'm happy I took this step forward."
Columbus was in a similar predicament to New England one week ago, entering the weekend on a seven-match winless run.
But the Crew managed to put a stop to the streak by coming from behind in a 2-1 defeat of the Montreal Impact on Saturday.
Bernardo Anor turned out a Man of the Match performance, bagging both goals to help the Crew overturn the deficit and collect all three points.
"I felt great," Anor said after the game. "I think finally getting back on track is very important. We have been looking for it for quite a long time now. And we have deserved this result since a couple games ago. Unfortunately, we haven't been able to get it, but tonight in front of a great crowd we have. There are still plenty of things we can work on but overall I am very happy about tonight's performance."
Saturday's trip to Gillette Stadium will be particularly special for one Crew player.
Michael Parkhurst was a key contributor for the Revs from 2005-08, receiving numerous individual accolades while helping the club make three successive MLS Cup appearances.
The defender will now return to his old stomping grounds for the first time since rejoining MLS at the start of the season.
"I'm excited to play in front of friends and family again," Parkhurst told the Crew's official website. "It's been a long time. I had four really good years there - a lot of good memories, a lot of good people. I'm looking forward to seeing some of those people that are still there and to bring back some good memories."