Trillium Cup Match at 3:00 today, Toronto FC invades Historic Crew Stadium

Trillium Cup (courtesy Columbus Crew)

It’s the second leg of the Trillium Cup series and the Columbus Crew (2-2-2, 8 pts.) looks to capitalize on its noted home-field advantage before the Club heads into the international break after Saturday’s contest vs. Toronto FC at Historic Crew Stadium (3 p.m., Bally Sports Ohio, 97.1 FM The Fan).

The Crew is 15-1-1 in its last 17 home matches (incl. playoffs) dating back to late last season. The last time the Black & Gold were defeated at home came on October 7, 2020, against CF Montreal.

Now, Toronto FC holds the 2021 Trillium Cup aggregate lead following a 2-0 victory over Columbus on May 12 from Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Florida. The victory marked the Reds’ third straight win over the Crew.

Just as home-field plays into the Crew’s favor, the road has been a tough setting for Toronto, who has collected just one point from their last six away games dating back to October 2020. At 1-3-2 on the season, TFC’s five points from six games is the third-worst start in the club’s MLS history (0 points in 2012, 4 points in 2018).

Offensively, the Crew is still searching for its first goal from open play this regular season, but Lucas Zelarayan’s free-kick brilliance has given the Club some momentum heading into Saturday following a free-kick brace against New York City FC last weekend, taking his total to three goals (all free kicks) for the season. The last player to score three direct free-kick goals in a season was Laurent Ciman for LAFC in 2018, while the only player with more since 2016 was Sebastian Giovinco (7 in 2017 for Toronto FC).

Kickoff is scheduled for 3 p.m. ET from Historic Crew Stadium.