Columbus Crew Audio Feature: Captain Jonathan Mensah looking forward to fans, fresh start and addition of new players for 2022 season

Jonathan Mensah getting fired up vs. New England at Field (courtesy Columbus Crew Communications)

Columbus Crew opens the 2022 MLS regular season at Lower.
com Field this Saturday when it hosts Vancouver Whitecaps FC.
The match is set to be the 11th all-time regular-season meeting
between the two sides. This will be the first regular-season contest
between the clubs since a 1-1 draw at BC Place in 2019.
The two sides last met on September 21, 2019, when the Crew
traveled to face Vancouver Whitecaps FC at BC Place. On that
occasion, the two sides played to a 1-1 draw, with Gyasi Zardes
converting a penalty kick in the 18th minute of the contest, before
Freddy Montero equalized for Whitecaps FC in second-half stoppage time.



On 3 January 2017, it was announced that Major League Soccer club Columbus Crew had signed Jonathan as the fifth Designated Player in club history. He became the second DP on the Columbus roster at the time, alongside Federico Higuaín. It would later be revealed that Jonathan would be the highest-earning Ghanaian player in MLS, just ahead of David Accam, making nearly $850,000 for the first year of his deal.

Prior to the season, Jonathan was named as part of the leadership council for Crew SC, alongside Federico HiguaínEthan FinlayJustin Meram, and Josh Williams. The five collectively served as vice-captains behind captain Wil Trapp. Jonathan made his club debut on 4 March, playing the full ninety minutes in a season-opening 1–1 draw with Chicago Fire. He scored his first goal for Crew SC on 26 August, providing the winner in a 2–1 victory over FC Dallas, then notched his second for the club nearly a month later, part of a 3–2 victory over New York Red Bulls on 23 September. However, Jonathan’s form during the season was strongly criticized, with even the player admitting that the season “wasn’t great”. He received two red cards, against Houston in March and Philadelphia in July, saw eleven total cards on the season, and committed multiple errors that were alleged to have led to goals. Despite these criticisms, he would remain an integral part of the Crew SC lineup, eventually starting all five playoff matches as Columbus were eliminated in the conference finals. Jonathan made 31 appearances in his first season in MLS, tallying two goals.

Jonathan remained on the leadership council ahead of the 2018 season, this time joined by Ricardo Clark, Higuaín, Hector JiménezZack Steffen, and Williams. He would see his contract bought down by the club in late January, meaning that Jonathan would no longer be considered a Designated Player and clearing the way for Milton Valenzuela to be acquired by Crew SC.

Prior to the 2020 season opener, Jonathan was named captain in his fourth season with the club, succeeding Trapp. Mensah provided an assist for the only goal scored by the Brazilian midfielder Artur to help his team win the eastern conference playoffs against New England Revolution to push them into the MLS Cup Final  He lifted the MLS Cup as club captain of Columbus Crew SC after the club scored Seattle Sounders FC 3-0 through a Lucas Zelarayán brace and a Derrick Etienne goal. He led the club to their 1st trophy in 12 years, whilst also being the first African to lift the Major League Soccer (MLS) Cup for The Black & Gold.

Jonathan Mensah Crew Defender 2022 preview Vancover Week 1 Feb 25 2026.mp3


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