Columbus Crew Match Notes at Chicago Fire FC

COLUMBUS
CREW
2021 REGULAR SEASON:
(6-6-6, 24 pts.)

CHICAGO
FIRE FC
2021 REGULAR SEASON:
(4-9-5, 17 pts.)

Date: Sunday, August 15
Match Time: 6:00 p.m. ET
Kickoff: 6:08 p.m. ET
Location: Soldier Field (Chicago, IL)
Local TV: Bally Sports Ohio Neil Sika (play-by-play) Jordan Angeli (analyst)
Brett Hiltbrand (sideline)
97.1 The Fan [Radio]: Chris Doran (play-by-play)
ColumbusCrew.com Spanish Audio Stream: Juan Valladares (play-by-play)

OHIOHEALTH PLAYER AVAILABILITY REPORT
OUT: Artur – R Hip Injury Luis Diaz – R Shoulder Injury Marlon Hairston – L Thigh Injury Perry Kitchen – L Knee Injury Aidan Morris – L Knee Injury Milton Valenzuela – R Thigh Injury Josh Williams – L Ankle Injury
QUESTIONABLE Vito Wormgoor – R Thigh Injury
Health and Safety Protocols
A player may be listed as “Questionable” or “Out” due to Health and Safety Protocols
for the following reasons:
• Quarantine due to participating in high risk behavior. • Quarantine related to being a high risk close contact. • Pending COVID-19 test results. • An inconclusive COVID-19 test result. • A positive COVID-19 test or a confirmed case of COVID-19. • Other illness not related to COVID-19.

MISCELLANEOUS TEAM NOTES

LAST MATCH RECAP

COLUMBUS CREW FALLS TO ATLANTA UNITED
On Saturday, Columbus Crew hosted Atlanta United. Atlanta
opened the scoring in the fifth minute through Ezequiel Barco
and doubled its lead in the 35th minute when Barco scored a
penalty kick goal. The Crew drew a goal back in the 37th minute
through defender Jonathan Mensah, assisted by Lucas Zelarayan.
Marcelino Moreno converted a penalty kick goal in the 65th minute for Atlanta United, while Crew midfielder Pedro Santos scored a penalty kick goal in second-half stoppage-time. The match
ended 3-2 in favor of Atlanta.

COLUMBUS CREW VS. CHICAGO FIRE FC AT A GLANCE

Columbus Crew record: 21-26-22 (105 GF, 93 GA)
Home games: 15-11-10 (64 GF, 40 GA)
Road games: 6-16-12 (41 GF, 53 GA)
08/20/2020 CLB 3 vs. CHI 0 W Historic Crew Stadium
09/12/2020 CLB 2 at CHI 2 D Soldier Field
06/19/2021 CLB 2 vs. CHI 0 W Historic Crew Stadium


THE CREW TRAVELS TO FACE CHICAGO FIRE FC ON SUNDAY
Columbus Crew travels to Chicago for a contest against Chicago Fire
FC on Sunday, August 15. The match is set to be the 70th all-time
regular-season meeting between the two sides. The Crew currently
has a seven-match regular-season unbeaten streak against Chicago
dating back to the 2018 season, and has outscored Fire FC 14-6 during the stretch.


LAST REGULAR-SEASON MEETING
On June 19, Columbus Crew faced Chicago Fire FC in the Farewell
to Historic Crew Stadium. The Black & Gold scored the opening goal
in the 17th minute through forward Gyasi Zardes. The Crew added
a second goal through Zardes in the 34th minute following assists
from midfielder Derrick Etienne Jr. and defender Jonathan Mensah.
Goalkeeper Evan Bush recorded a clean sheet in his Club debut, while
midfielder Kevin Molino made his first appearance for the Crew as a
second-half substitute.


COACHES
Caleb Porter: 96-78-71 (Portland Timbers: ‘13 – ’17; Columbus Crew: ’19 – Present) vs.
Raphael Wicky: 9-19-13 (Chicago Fire FC ’20 – Present)
Records listed are MLS regular-season totals

2021 REGULAR-SEASON SNAPSHOT

COLUMBUS CREW CHICAGO FIRE FC

2021 MLS Regular Season: 2021 MLS Regular Season:
Points: 24 Points: 17
Points Per Game: 1.33 Points Per Game: 0.94
Eastern Conference: Seventh Eastern Conference: 11th
Home: 4-2-3 Home: 4-4-4
Away: 2-4-3 Away: 0-5-1
Goals For: 21 Goals For: 20
Goals Against: 23 Goals Against: 29
+/-: -2 +/-: -9
2021 Regular-Season Leaders
Goals: Zelarayan (6) Goals: Stojanovic (5)
Assists: Santos, Zelarayan (3) Assists: Medran (5)
Shots: Zelarayan (47) Shots: Beric (43)
Shots on Goal: Zelarayan (16) Shots on Goal: Beric (12)
Fouls Suffered: Zelarayan (39) Fouls Suffered: Medran (37)
Fouls Committed: Santos (27) Fouls Committed: Herbers (23)
Yellow Cards Issued: Three players tied (4) Yellow Cards Issued: Herbers (5)
Saves Leader: Room (44) Saves Leader: Shuttleworth (63)
GAA Leader: Bush (1.2) GAA Leader: Slonina (0.00)
Wins: Room (5) Wins: Shuttleworth (4)

BLACK & GOLD NOTES

WHERE TO WATCH/LISTEN
Sunday’s road match against Chicago Fire FC begins at 6:00
p.m. ET and is set to be locally televised on Bally Sports Ohio
and via stream on the Bally Sports App. Neil Sika, Jordan Angeli and Brett Hiltbrand are slated to have the call in English.
Pre-match coverage will begin at 5:30 p.m. ET on Bally Sports
Ohio. The contest is also available in English on 97.1 The Fan,
as well as via stream on 971TheFan.com, with Chris Doran calling the match. A Spanish audio stream is available on ColumbusCrew.com, with Juan Valladares on the call.

MENSAH SCORES SECOND GOAL OF THE REGULAR SEASON,
THIRD OF 2021
Defender Jonathan Mensah scored his second goal of the
regular season in the 37th minute of Saturday’s match against
Atlanta United. Both of Mensah’s goals this season have come
against Atlanta, having scored the match-winning goal in a
1-0 win at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on July 24. The two goals
ties Mensah’s MLS regular season-high total, having last done
so during the 2017 season. Mensah has scored three goals for
the Black & Gold across all competitions this year, having also
scored in the Concacaf Champions League in a road contest
against Real Esteli FC (April 8).

ZELARAYAN PROVIDES THIRD ASSIST OF 2021 REGULAR SEA- SON
Midfielder Lucas Zelarayan provided the assist on Jonathan
Mensah’s 37th-minute goal in Saturday’s match against At- lanta United. The helper was Zelarayan’s third of the regular season and the seventh of his regular-season career for the
Crew. Across all competitions this year, Zelarayan has supplied
five assists, including two in the Round of 16 in the Concacaf
Champions League against Real Esteli FC.

SANTOS SCORES SECOND GOAL OF REGULAR SEASON, THIRD
OF 2021
Midfielder Pedro Santos scored a penalty kick goal in the first
minute of second-half stoppage-time in Saturday’s match
against Atlanta United. The goal was his second of the regular
season and his third across all competitions, having scored
on the road against Real Esteli FC in the Concacaf Champions
League (April 8).

SANTOS: PERFECT FROM THE PENALTY SPOT
Since making his debut for the Crew in 2017 (August 19),
midfielder Pedro Santos has converted every penalty kick he
has taken in regular-season action for the Black & Gold. Santos
has scored four goals from the penalty spot, with his first one
coming against Seattle Sounders FC in 2019 (June 23). Since
then, he has also converted against FC Cincinnati (October
14, 2020), New York City FC (July 30, 2021) and Atlanta United
(August 7, 2021). No other Crew player has a 100% penalty
kick conversion rate over that span.

COLUMBUS CREW SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CAPS (AS OF AUGUST 5, 2021)
Player National Team Caps Last Appearance
Liam Fraser Canada 8 7/25/21 vs. Costa Rica (Concacaf Gold Cup)
Luis Diaz Costa Rica 7 7/25/21 vs. Canada (Concacaf Gold Cup)
Waylon Francis Costa Rica 7 3/22/19 vs. Guatemala (friendly)
Eloy Room Curacao 40 6/15/21 vs. Panama (FIFA World Cup qualifier)
Harrison Afful Ghana 77 9/08/18 vs. Kenya (AFCoN qua.)
Jonathan Mensah Ghana 60 6/29/19 vs. Cameroon (AFCoN)
Derrick Etienne Jr. Haiti 31 7/18/21 vs. Martinique (Concacaf Gold Cup)
Kevin Molino Trinidad & Tobago 53 7/18/21 vs. Guatemala (Concacaf Gold Cup)
Perry Kitchen United States 5 10/11/16 vs. New Zealand (friendly)
Darlington Nagbe United States 25 3/28/18 vs. Paraguay (friendly)
Gyasi Zardes United States 62 8/1/21 vs. Mexico (Concacaf Gold Cup)

ETIENNE JR. ON THE VERGE OF 100TH MLS REGULAR-SEASON
APPEARANCE
With his next appearance for the Crew, midfielder Derrick
Etienne Jr. will record his 100th Major League Soccer regular
season appearance. Since joining MLS prior to the 2016 season,
Etienne Jr. has made 99 appearances (39 starts) for the New York
Red Bulls, FC Cincinnati, and Columbus Crew. During that time,
he has scored seven goals and added eight assists. He was part
of the Supporters’ Shield winning 2018 New York Red Bulls side
and won MLS Cup last season for the Crew, scoring the Club’s
second goal in the match.

COLUMBUS CREW UNDEFEATED AGAINST CHICAGO FIRE FC
SINCE 2018
Entering Sunday’s match, the Crew currently holds a sevenmatch regular-season unbeaten streak against Chicago Fire FC dating back to the 2018 season (May 12). During that time, the
Black & Gold have posted a record of 3-0-4 while outscoring
Chicago 14-6.

ZARDES LOOKS TO ADD TO GOALSCORING TOTAL AGAINST
CHICAGO FIRE
During the Crew’s unbeaten run against Chicago Fire FC, forward
Gyasi Zardes has scored seven goals (one game-winning goal),
tying him with Edson Buddle for the second spot in the Club’s
table of all-time goal scorers against Chicago in regular-season
action. Zardes has registered two different two-goal performances (May 12, 2018; June 19, 2021). For a list of the Black & Gold’s
all-time leading goal scorers against Chicago Fire FC, please see
the table below.
COLUMBUS CREW ALL-TIME LEADING GOAL SCORERS
AGAINST CHICAGO FIRE FC
NAME GP G

  1. Jeff Cunningham 25 13
    T-2. Edson Buddle 15 7
    T-2. Gyasi Zardes 8 7
  2. Federico Higuain 14 5

AIR MENSAH: THE DEFENSIVE WALL
Defender Jonathan Mensah leads MLS in headed clearances
this season, having made 48 in regular-season action this year.
In addition to leading the League in headed clearances, Mensah
has made 76 total clearances, tying with Andrew Farrell (New
England Revolution) for fifth-most clearances in regular-season
action in 2021. For a list of the players with the most headed
clearances in MLS regular-season action this year, please see the
table below:
2021 MLS REGULAR-SEASON LEADERS: HEADED CLEARANCES
PLAYER HC

  1. Jonathan Mensah (CLB) 48
  2. Jack Elliot (PHI) 47
  3. Nkosi Burgess (DAL) 43
    T-4. Yeimar Gomez (SEA) 42
    T-4. Bill Tuiloma (POR) 4

ZELARAYAN NAMED TO MLS ALL-STAR ROSTER, ALSO NAMED TO
MLS ALL-STAR SKILLS CHALLENGE PRESENTED BY AT&T
On August 4, Columbus Crew and Major League Soccer announced that midfielder Lucas Zelarayan had been selected for
the 2021 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target. The match is
set to take place against the Liga MX All-Stars at Banc of Cali- fornia Stadium in Los Angeles, California on August 25 [9 p.m.
ET / FS1 / Univision]. Zelarayan is the 24th player in Club history
to be named an MLS All-Star and is the first for the Crew since
goalkeeper Zack Steffen was named to the team during the 2018
season. Additionally, Zelarayan was one of eight players selected
to represent MLS in the All-Star Skills Challenge Presented by
AT&T

ZARDES HIGHEST-SCORING AMERICAN IN MLS SINCE 2018
Since joining the Crew prior to the 2018 season, forward Gyasi
Zardes has been the highest-scoring American player in MLS
regular-season action. Zardes’ 48 strikes in regular-season action
put him ahead of Chris Wondolowski’s 34 goals. Additionally,
46 of Zardes’s goals have been scored from inside the 18-yard
box, with the forward also leading all American players in that
category

NAGBE AND HAIRSTON: PASS MASTERS
Through 18 matches in the 2021 MLS regular season, midfielders
Darlington Nagbe and Marlon Hairston are among the League
leaders in passing accuracy among players who have attempted
100 or more passes. Nagbe has made 17 starts while completing
843 of his 875 attempted passes for a passing accuracy percent- age of 96.34%, while Hairston has made 10 appearances and
completed 351 of his 373 attempted passes for a passing accu- racy percentage of 94.1%. For a list of five MLS players with the
highest passing accuracy this season, please see the table below.
2021 PLAYERS WITH HIGHEST PASSING ACCURACY*
PLAYER ATT. COMP. %

  1. Darlington Nagbe (CLB) 875 843 96.34
  2. Marlon Hairston (CLB) 373 351 94.10
  3. Kamohelo Mekotjo (CIN) 142 132 92.96
  4. Adam Saldana (LA) 390 362 92.82
  5. Anibal Godoy (NSH) 596 553 92.79
    *2021 MLS regular season (100 or more passes only, as of 8/11/2021)

BLACK & GOLD QUOTES

ON THE TEAM’S MENTALITY AT THE SEASON HALFWAY MARK
“Tough moments don’t last, but tough people last. That’s one signature
of this team. We’re a resiliant and tough team, and no matter the results,
we keep pushing.”

  • JONATHAN MENSAH
    ON REACHING THE HALFWAY POINT OF THE SEASON
    “The middle of the season is always tough, not just for us. I’m trying to
    focus on the positives. There’s definitely things that we can look on.
    We’re still in playoff position, and that’s saying a lot.”
  • DARLINGTON NAGBE
    ON THE TEAM’S FOCUS AFTER LAST WEEK
    “We have to remind ourselves where we’re at, even after we had a tough
    week. We’re still in playoff position, and four points off the top three.”
  • CALEB PORTER

MILESTONES ON THE HORIZON

CALEB PORTER
• Has won 96 MLS regular-season matches as a head coach and is four wins
away from reaching 100 all-time.
HARRISON AFFUL
• Has made 148 regular-season starts for the Crew and needs three more to
reach 150.
DERRICK ETIENNE JR.
• Has made 99 MLS regular-season appearances and needs one more to
reach 100.
ERIK HURTADO
• Has made 146 MLS regular-season appearances and needs four more to
reach 150.
KEVIN MOLINO
• Has made 97 MLS regular-season starts and needs three more to reach 100.
JOSH WILLIAMS
• Has made 149 regular-season appearances for the Crew and needs one
more to reach 150.
GYASI ZARDES
• Has made 94 regular-season appearances for the Crew and needs six more
to reach 100.
• Has scored 48 regular-season goals for the Crew and needs two more to
reach 50

COURTESY COLUMBUS CREW COMMUNICATIONS

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