4-1-2 over the last 22 days. In a playoff position with 7 games remaining.
Although they lost at Gillette Stadium to the Revolution 2-0, the Crew knows they have played themselves into a playoff spot.
Both clubs were playing no to lose in the first half. Not many chances, either way. The first half ended at a 0-0 tie.
Crew head coach Robert Warzycha, “Overall, if we talk about the last seven games, we should be happy about how many games we won and how many points we got. Obviously, this game we came here to win but it didn’t happen. I think New England was much quicker and I think they were more decisive and they wanted it more and that’s why they won.”
The Revolution opened the scoring 8 minutes into the 2nd half. Imbongo put away a loose ball to give them a 1-0 lead over the Crew. Teh weary legs over Columbus started to show.
The Crew’s Eddie Gaven, “(Fatigue) might have played a little bit (of a role), but we just weren’t very sharp tonight. We just weren’t making the right soccer decisions. At times, maybe we should have just went long with the ball and we tried to play, and the ball might have taken a bad bounce on the turf. Things happen, we turned the ball over in some dangerous areas of the field. That gave them some momentum, and they were able to get off two goals off of that. We weren’t able to create anything going forward, so we’ve just got to look at the film and make it better.”
At the 74′ mark, Chad Marshall attempted to clear the ball with a header, but ended up putting it in his own goal. This is never good.
Crew goalkeeper Andy “The Hebrew Hammer” Gruenebaum, “Just two fluky goals. Shouldn’t happen. It just never should happen. Obviously, miscommunication on the second one. The first one, just bouncing around … just two fluky goals.”
3 points squandered and a missed opportunity, but that’s why they play the game. Next up for the Black and Gold is a trip to New York on Saturday, September 15th. First kick is at 7:00pm (ET).
This Tuesday, September 11th, the USMNT takes on Jamaica from Crew Stadium at 8:00pm (ET) in a World Cup 2014 qualifier. Be there supporting YOUR national team.
Until then, Stay Massive my friends.
The Crew have won the last five games, thanks to the rejuvenating power of players like Jario Arrieta and Federico Higuian, and are now sitting tied for fourth place in the Eastern Conference. New England, on the other hand, is still on a winless streak tallying ten games without a win. This winless streak is keeping the Revolution tied down in second to last place in the Eastern Conference with a measly 25 points.
The last two meetings between these teams have seen two very different games. The match played in June was one of the most lackluster performances fans have seen from the Crew this season. The more recent, played just ten days ago, was probably one of the most exciting games for the Crew this season, with the Black and Gold coming out on top 4-3.
The renewed energy that Columbus has picked up over these last few weeks has been amazing, but also worrying. Tomorrow, our boys will play their seventh match in a 22 day span. Though the players have to be worn out at this point, Coach Warzycha has stuck with roughly the same line up for each of these games. Will he continue with this line up tomorrow? My guess is, yes, or something quite like it. Though Danny O’Rourke, Jario Arrieta and Andy Gruenebaum are all listed on the injured list, they will all probably start. I doubt there is much that would keep most of the team off the field at this point.
The past few games it has been noticeable that the team is tired. Not just tired, exhausted. The first 60 minutes have been agonizing to watch. The team just hasn’t been trying that hard at the beginning of the matches. Whereas during the final 30 minutes, the team seems to pull energy and drive out of nowhere to come back and win the game. Talk about come-back kings, this team is a classic definition. Now if they can only keep it up.
For this game, I’m predicting a win – 3-1 to the Black and Gold.
So tune in to the game tomorrow night, and root loud and hard for the Columbus Crew and their late season playoff run.
16,568 fans in Philly watched the Crew break a 1-1 deadlock while a man down for the final 20+ minutes to snatch 3 points from the Union. Eddie Gaven sealed the win in stoppage time with the final score 2-1 Crew.
Head coach Robert Warzcha, “We came here to win the game. We said before the game, we came here to win three points. Obviously, for Philadelphia, it was a huge game; they also had plans to go to the playoffs.”
While the passing wasn’t the greatest in the first half, the Crew’s defense kept Philly from garnering more than one goal. Matt Lampson was almost stellar in his first start in goal. He was tested early, which helped to calm his nerves.
The Union opened the scoring at 29′ with the Crew answering at 41′, with Josh Williams getting his first MLS goal after being oh-so-close many times. It was a beautiful cross from Federico Higuain, with Williams heading the ball into the back of the net. A the half it was 1-1.
Crew captain Chad Marshall, “It’s difficult, you know. It was a battle for sure. They were throwing a lot of numbers forward, and they got a lot of small, quick, tricky players. It was a difficult game, and you know to not only hold on and not give up a goal, but to also get the winner. It’s just a huge three points for us.”
In the second half at 68′, Williams was sent off with a straight Red Card for a scrum with a Union player. The Crew, now down to ten men, withstood a Philly onslaught of almost everything but the kitchen sink being thrown at them. They stood tall and weathered the storm.
The Crew’s Danny O’Rourke, “With the team now, we have some proven strikers that find the back of the net. We don’t panic, when we get down one nothing, two nothing. We continue to fight… Now we just have guys calm around the box, and create chances for us. I mean we started to gel kinda at the right time. We got to enjoy this tonight.”
Next for the Crew, Montreal visits Crew Stadium on Saturday. First kick at 7:30pm. Another 3 points are on the line.
Until then, Stay Massive my friends.
Okay sports fans. Sit back and take a deep breath. Last night’s match wasn’t a dream. It really happened. Revel in the glory of the Columbus Crew defeating the New England Revolution 4-3.
Federico Higuain is redefining the term “Be Massive” before your very eyes.
With this win, the Crew have moved within 4 points of being in a playoff position in the Eastern Conference. The excitement that seemed to be waning, is back. As Max Bretos of ESPN said via Twitter last night, “Said it when he got here, Federico Higuain can ball. Reminding those in Columbus of Schelotto. @ColumbusCrew are an MLS Cup contender, NOW”. When was the last time that the Crew scored 4 goals in a match, you ask? That would be June 26, 2011 vs Colorado. Heady stuff, indeed.
While the Crew started somewhat slow, surrendering 2 goals by the 23rd minute, they didn’t lose their composure. In the 26th minute, Higuain stepped up to take a free kick. He connected solidly with the ball, sending it over the wall and into the net.
Crew head coach Robert Warzycha on the free kicks, “Those ridiculous free kicks, I told the guys in the locker room ‘I practice [free kicks] almost every day. You can see me doing free kicks with Justin Meram and Emilio [Renteria]. Federico, he’s just sitting on the side not doing free kicks with us. Look at today, he went over the there and scores two.’ (laughs) I’m like ‘where the heck did that guy come from?’ It’s amazing to have talent like this.”
Six minutes after Higuain scored, “birthday boy” Jairo Arrieta netted the equalizer off a no-look pass from Milovan Mirosevic. The Costa Rican settled the ball before blasting it past Revs goalkeeper Matt Reis.
Just before the half, Higuain once again stepped up for a free kick. This time he went opposite corner from his previous free kick and gave the Crew a 3-2 lead as they headed to the locker room.
The second half started with Home Grown Player Matt Lampson coming on in relief of Andy Gruenebaum, after he suffered a lower-back contusion.
Crew goalkeeper Matt Lampson, “I don’t want anything to go to my head or anything. I think I just did my job today and I think I did pretty well. All things considered [the Crew defense] kept me safe in the back. I’m happy about that. They picked me up when I got scored on. We got the win, that’s most important.”
The match settled into a stalemate of sorts, until the 81st minute. The Crew’s Julius James was called for a penalty, albeit a weak one, as Diego Fagundez sold it well. A PK was awarded and the Revs equalized. It was now nail-biting time for the throngs in the Nordecke.
Somewhat lost in the glow surrounding Higuain, Arrieta showed he’s just as capable of gaining the spotlight. In the 86th minute, Arrieta got behind the Revs defense on a pass from Tony Tchani. Once again, he settled the ball before getting past Matt Reis to give the Crew a 4-3 lead. Matt Lampson would make the required saves to preserve that lead and give the Crew consecutive wins.
The Crew’s Jairo Arrieta, “I’m always under pressure to score. I’m a forward. That’s what I like to do. Again, the most important part of all of this is that the team needed to win and if that goal helps the team, that’s what matters. I’m happy when the team wins and we need to keep winning games because it’s getting close to playoffs.”
The emotional ride was well worth the 3 points. Federico Higuain put on a set-piece clinic that was simply beautiful. Former Crew forward and USMNT member Dante Washington said this about the Revs Matt Reis (via Twitter), “Remembering a scouting report years ago on Reis being suspect on set pieces. But
#higuain taking it to a new level”. Jairo Arrieta has some wheels, as he’s shown of late. The bottom line is simply this: the Crew got their Hooligan On. BOOM.
Next up, the Crew travel to the City of Brotherly Love on Wednesday to take on the Philadelphia Union in PPL Park. It’s an 8pm ET start.
Until next time, Stay Massive my friends.
Today, for the third time this week, the Columbus Crew will be fighting for three points, this time against New England Revolution. It’s also Pride Night and Dollar Night, with kick off scheduled for 7:30pm ET.
The Crew picked up a much needed three points this past Wednesday after defeating Toronto FC at home. The game against New England should be another win, seeing as New England is second to last in the Eastern Conference standings, Columbus should be able to make short work of them.
The last meeting between Columbus and New England ended in a very unexciting scoreless draw. Since this is the Black and Gold’s third game this week and fourth game in eleven days, it could bode ill for our boys. The team has to be tired by now, and tired legs and minds make simple mistakes.
For Wednesday’s match, I expected a line up change, but Coach Warzycha still played most of his strong and experienced players. Will he choose to do the same thing tonight? I highly doubt all of them will play, they have to be quite fatigued by now. Fans should probably see a switch up of the back line and give Sebastian Miranda and Carlos Mendes a rest. I also think Eddie Gaven deserves a rest, but I’m sure Gaven and his beard will show up in top form, as usual.
Despite tired legs, this is another important game for the Crew. The team is just trailing Montreal Impact by three points in the Eastern Conference. A win tonight could bring them up to tie with the team from Canada, providing Montreal loses to D.C. United today. A tie between the two teams would be most beneficial for the Crew as that would only put Montreal at 34 points and D.C. at 41.
New England is coming off of a seven game winless streak, so the team will be fighting hard for a win, to put their total to seven wins this season. The Revolution will probably play with a strong attacking mindset, looking to wear out the Crew’s defense early on. The real test for Columbus will be the final third of the match. The past few games the players have lost their steam towards the end of the match, losing possession easily and making mistakes. If New England takes advantage of this, I could see a loss in the Crew’s future.
I’m hesitant to make a prediction for this match up, but I’m going with another win for Columbus, 2-1.
Make sure to check out the Hudson Street Hooligan tailgate tonight and bring your cash for vintage HSH items, and for those dollar beers and brats.
After earning his first assist for the Black & Gold in just his 13th minute versus Houston on Sunday night, Federico Higuain tallied yet another assist and his first goal for the Crew in downing Toronto FC 2-1.
He’s also been yellow carded twice. All of this in only 121 minutes of play. The Flying Higuain, indeed.
While his speed, passing and finishing are standouts in his game, the way he sees the pitch and everything around him is, at times, cerebral. Now you know why the Crew spent almost a year trying to get him in Columbus. All of the above, and more, is the reason he’s the third Designated Player in Columbus’ history.
Head coach Warzycha on Higuain: “Obviously he’s a good player. You can see his quality on the field and I’m sure he’s going to help his team. I think that his passes are right and I think he is picking out the right guys as they make their runs. I think the guys around him are going to play better because he’s a smart player.”
From the first kick the crew’s passing was crisper (although it could still use some work), and the pace of the match was good for the first 45′. With a deft touch, Higuain set up Eddie Gaven to find the back of the goal in the 4th minute. The two clubs would trade chances throughout the rest of the half, with the score in the Crew’s favor, 1-0 at the half.
In the 58th minute, Jairo Arrieta passed to Higuain who sailed it past Toronto goalkeeper Freddy Hall to put the Crew up 2-0. Toronto got one back in the 71st minute, but that was all they could muster. Both teams seemed somewhat sluggish in the second half and the match became rather boring. The Crew need to find a way to put the match away with a third goal.
Crew head coach Robert Warzycha: “Sometimes when you’re winning you have a tendency to drop and we probably dropped too much and they were putting the ball in the box. Fortunately for us Chad [Marshall] was always in the right place and Andy [Gruenebaum] was in the right place.”
With the match ending in the Crew’s favor, the Trillium Cup returns to Columbus. Although, someone (I’m looking at you Toronto) forgot to bring the Cup with them.
One thing the Crew has up front now is “quality”. Here’s the Crew’s Milovan Mirosevic on Higuain and Arrieta: “We needed a forward like him and also like Jairo [Arrieta]. I think Jairo has been very, very good. He’s been holding the balls that we surely didn’t in the first games of the season. With those two guys in front, they have provided a lot of quality.”
All in all, a much needed 3 points for Columbus as they claw their way back into the playoff picture. As Federico Higuain himself said, “I’m happy for the goal but happier for getting the goal that got us three points.”
Next up for the Crew is a match Saturday, when they play host to the visiting New England Revolution. First Kick is at 7:30 ET.
Until then, Stay Massive my friends.