Saturday, Oct 16, 2021
Gyasi Zardes and Pedro Santos lifted the Columbus Crew to a resounding home victory at Lower.com Field, as they beat Inter Miami CF 4-0 on Saturday evening to help earn head coach Caleb Porter his 100th career MLS regular-season victory.
Zardes’ two-goal effort – coupled with a goal and two assists from Santos – kept Columbus within striking distance of the Eastern Conference’s seven Audi 2021 MLS Cup Playoffs places with five regular-season games remaining. Miami have now lost six straight for the second time this season and were shut out for the fourth game in a row, further sinking their postseason hopes.
After a slow start, Columbus beat Nick Marsman in the 40th minute through Zardes. Fresh off representing the US men’s national team during October’s international break, he flicked home a header off Santos’ feed to make it 1-0.
Moments later, in the 44th minute, Santos scored a goal of his own. Darlington Nagbe pounced on a Gonzalo Higuain turnover from a throw-in and slipped it centrally to the Portuguese winger for a simple finish that doubled the hosts’ advantage.
Then, Santos and Zardes combined once more with just over 25 minutes remaining. Santos ripped a brilliant pass from the right side to the Crew striker, who secured his brace with a bouncing header as Columbus’ lead grew to 3-0. Miami then conceded an own goal in the 83rd minute through center back Leandro Gonzalez Pirez for the match’s final tally.
COURTESY COLUMBUS CREW COMMUNICATIONS