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December 2018
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‘Crew SC’ Articles

Crew SC hosts NY Red Bulls in 2018 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs today at 3 PM




Columbus Crew SC vs. New York Red Bulls
Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs — Conference Semifinals, First Leg
MAPFRE Stadium — Columbus
November 4 — 3 pm ET




After following the same script to pull off a Knockout Round upset for the second year in a row, Columbus Crew SC is looking to knock off a New York-area squad in the Eastern Conference Semifinals in back-to-back years.

The New York Red Bulls are rested after capturing their third Supporters’ Shield title in six years with a Decision Day presented by AT&T win over Orlando City SC coupled with Toronto FC’s victory over Atlanta United.

The MLS originals have met three previous times in the postseason with Crew SC winning each matchup, including the 2008 MLS Cup and, most recently, the Eastern Conference final in 2015, prevailing 2-1 on aggregate.

At MAPFRE Stadium in June, the Red Bulls spent much of the game defending and Crew SC took a deserved lead on a 26th-minute goal by Gyasi Zardes before Alex Muyl leveled in the 57th minute in a 1-1 draw.

At Red Bull Arena in late July, Jonathan Mensah and Patrick Mullins struck, followed by a Sean Davis own goal to give Columbus a 3-0 lead after 31 minutes. The Red Bulls roared back after halftime and pulled to within a goal on a Mensah own goal and a Daniel Royer goal in the 69th minute, but the Black & Gold would prevail 3-2, becoming just the second team this year to win in Harrison and the only team in the East the Red Bulls didn’t beat this year.


  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: M – Federico Higuain, M – Eduardo Sosa
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: M – Mike Grella (left knee meniscectomy), M – Pedro Santos (right leg injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Zack Seffen — Harrison Afful, Jonathan Mensah, Gaston Sauro, Milton Valenzuela — Artur, Wil Trapp — Niko Hansen, Federico Higuain, Justin Meram — Gyasi Zardes

  • Notes: Higuain’s brace against D.C. United was his ninth all time for the Crew – tops for the team since 2007. … Including the playoffs Columbus is undefeated in four against the Red Bulls at home (3W-1D). They haven’t been held scoreless in Ohio vs New York since May 4, 2013.


What seemed like a long shot became a reality last Saturday when the Red Bulls captured a third Supporters’ Shield title in six years following a 1-0 win over Orlando City SC on Decision Day.

Now, the Red Bulls begin a quest to capture a first-ever MLS Cup after 22 years of postseason failure.

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: M – Florian Valot (torn left ACL), D – Kyle Duncan (torn right ACL), M – Vincent Bezecourt (right MCL surgery), D – Tommy Redding (shoulder surgery), M – Ben Mines (broken left clavicle surgery)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Luis Robles — Michael Murillo, Tim Parker, Aaron Long, Kemar Lawrence — Tyler Adams, Sean Davis — Alex Muyl, Kaku, Danny Royer — Bradley Wright-Phillips

  • Notes: Bradley Wright-Phillips averaged 1.0 goals+assists per 90 in the regular season, tied for his best average in a season since joining the Red Bulls in 2013. … The Red Bulls kept 15 clean sheets in 2018, tied for the third-most ever in a MLS season. Four of those came in road games, tied for their second most in a season since 2010.

All-Time Series (Regular Season)


Referee: Nima Saghafi
Assistant Referees: Peter Manikowski, Jose J. Da Silva
4th Official: Armando Villarreal
VAR: Mark Geiger






Crew SC wins shoot out at DC United with Higuian & Steffen starring; earns ticket to Eastern Conference Semifinals vs. NY Red Bulls











In a match eerily similar to last season’s postseason triumph over Atlanta United FC and nearly a year to the day, a brace from Federico Higuaín and penalty-kick heroics from Zack Steffen propelled Columbus Crew SC past D.C. United 3-2 in penalty kicks in the Knockout Round of the Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs on Thursday, Nov. 1 at Audi Field in Washington, D.C.

D.C. United, who had not lost in its last 10 matches - including five straight home wins – struck first via Frédéric Brillant after a Columbus defensive miscue at the goal line in the 21st minute.

Hungry to equalize, Crew SC turned to Higuaín just nine minutes later. Following a Justin Meram cross from the left flank, the veteran midfielder found himself in the right place at the right time inside the six-yard-box and toed in the equalizer, marking his third career postseason goal.

After over an hour of scoreless play, the match entered extra time tied at 1-1 before the Maestro struck again. This time, it was a whipping header from 13 yards out placed deftly inside the far post past a diving Bill Hamid.

D.C.’s attacking pressure eventually broke through in the second period of extra time as Nick DeLeon connected solidly on a well-placed strike following a heading clearance from Gyasi Zardes.

Tied at 2-2 entering PKs, Higuaín calmly converted for the night’s first PK. Up next, Zack Steffen continued doing what Zack Steffen does in penalty kick shootouts, this time against Wayne Rooney.

Wil Trapp and Niko Hansen each converted while Zardes’ attempt was saved by Hamid. Up third for D.C. was Lucas Acosta, and again, Steffen came up huge.

Patrick Mullins stepped up with a chance to win the game against his former team, but was denied by the post.

Next for D.C. was DeLeon, the game-tying scorer with an opportunity to bring D.C. level and extend to a sixth round. With a quick approach, the veteran lifted his try over the frame, sealing Crew SC’s second-straight Knockout Round road victory.

Crew SC now hosts the New York Red Bulls in Leg 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals on Sunday, Nov. 4 at 3 p.m. ET at MAPFRE Stadium. Leg 2 will be held at Red Bull Arena on Sunday, November 11, with the time to be determined following Sunday’s match.




Zardes scores hat trick in 3-2 win over Minnesota; Crew SC gains playoffs into knockout round





63,945 Wil Trapp Crew SC Captain Team gets 3 goals from its best player Boads well for the upcoming playoffs 10 28 2018

63,946) Wil Trapp Crew SC captain Delay just 9 minutes into game what did the team want to do after play resumed 10 28 2018

63,947 Wil Trapp Crew SC captain On getting Gyasi Zardes scoring again he now has 19 on the season 10 28 2018

63,948 Wil Trapp Crew SC captain How did the team occupy its time during the hour weather delay 10 28 2018


Three goals from forward Gyasi Zardes propelled Columbus Crew SC to a 3-2 victory over Minnesota United FC, and in the process clinching an Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs berth for the Black & Gold on Sunday evening at MAPFRE Stadium.

Thanks to a first-half weather delay, Crew SC had the advantage of knowing their postseason qualification at halftime against Minnesota, as a Montreal Impact loss at New England secured a top-six finish for Columbus.

The victory combined with a loss from the Philadelphia Union saw Columbus finish at fifth in the Eastern Conference.

Following the delay, Zardes quickly put Columbus on the board after a corner kick from Federico Higuain in the 11th minute. Higuain sent a short corner to Milton Valenzuela, who crossed to the middle of the box to set up Zardes for a perfect header. The tally marked Zardes’ 17th of the season and a new personal regular-season career high.

Zardes doubled Columbus’ lead in the second half, capitalizing on a blocked free kick from Higuain. The Crew SC midfielder sent a driven ball directly toward  former Crew SC and current Minnesota goalkeeper Matt Lampson, who coughed it up to a pouncing Zardes as he finished with vigor to make it a 2-0 advantage.

United responded, however, with two straight goals from Francisco Calvin in the 68th and 77th minutes, respectively.

In the 83rd minute, Zardes secured his first career hat trick with a tally similar to his first goal on a ball from Niko Hansen. Defender Harrison Afful ran the ball up the right side of the field and laid it off to Hansen, who delivered a cutting ball to the center of the box for Zardes to capture the game-winner.

Columbus finished the night with 19 total shots and out-possessed Minnesota 52 to 48 percent.




Crew SC staying in Columbus; MLS to give Austin expansion franchise: Precourt Sports Ventures, LLC issues statement



(courtesy Crew SC)


With the recent news of a possible investor group stepping into Columbus, Austin FC is on the verge of becoming the first major league sports franchise in the history of Austin.


PSV has made remarkable progress in Austin, and when the definitive agreement with the City of Austin is finalized, MLS in Austin will be a reality. Regardless of the possibility of any bona fide investor group in Columbus closing on a transaction to assume operating rights to Columbus Crew SC, Austin FC will be playing MLS matches in the Texas state capital in the near future. The club will likely begin playing at a date no later than the spring 2021 opening of the new, privately-financed stadium and soccer park at McKalla Place.
Although the process is not yet final in Austin, a successful outcome is within reach and PSV remains grateful for the patience and support of all involved.


The strength and resiliency of Austin supporters and elected officials have helped create a successful foundation for Austin FC to be a proud community platform, and PSV is incredibly excited for what lies ahead.


Crew SC lays an egg in playoff chase with 3-0 loss at Montreal



Columbus Crew SC traveled to face the Montreal Impact in a Saturday afternoon showdown. The Black & Gold lost to the Impact 3-0.

The first half saw no shortage of action, with each side level in possession. Columbus recorded four shots on goal in the first half but could not get past Montreal goalkeeper Evan Bush. A hand ball penalty called on defender Josh Williams gave Montreal the opportunity to find the first score of the match. Goalkeeper Zack Steffen recorded six saves on the day, even with the final score.

Montreal’s Saphir Taïder stepped up to the penalty line in the 32nd minute and converted to put Montreal on the board, 1-0. Just four minutes later, Columbus’ Gyasi Zardes found himself in front of the net and headed a ball towards Bush for a potential equalizer but was ultimately denied. Montreal then doubled their lead in the 45th minute.

In the 59th minute, Montreal struck again, bringing the score to 3-0. The best chance for Columbus came in the 81st minute from midfielder Mike Grella. Grella struck high, making Montreal’s Bush reach for the save. Columbus tallied an additional five shots on target in the second half but the final push was unable to be found. Despite the result, Columbus out-shot Montreal 14 to 13 and out-posessed the Impact, 55 percent to 45 percent.

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