Game 25: NYRB 1 – Crew 3
The Columbus Crew continue to win and look good doing it, this time without Schelotto. Even giving away a goal to New York early, the Crew never looked in trouble of losing just their third game at home this year. Instead the team responded with three straight goals to secure their 9th win at home this year.
Both teams started strong in the first half. New York pressed the speed advantage they had with Richards’ pace and using Magee in the middle to create a couple chances early. The Crew also had several chances including Gaven ringing a shot off the post. However, the first goal would not come off of a well worked sequence. Top Red Bull striker, Juan Pablo Angel, would take a wonderful free kick and bend it over the wall and past Hesmer.
An unfortunate injury to Miglioranzi just before the goal forced the addition of Ekpo into the lineup. This change sent the Crew offense into high gear. The fans were treated to driving runs, sharp passing, and well executed sequences. The Crew repeatedly came close to equalizing and had New York on the back foot until Hejduk’s cross/shot caught Conway off his line and fell to the back of the net.
Halftime did nothing to slow the Crew offensive machine. Rogers was rewarded for his outstanding play with a goal just 19 seconds into the start of the second half. His shot was a beauty. Prettier than Hejduk’s chip just a few minutes earlier. The team did not let up on the throttle as they repeatedly pushed for a third goal. Gaven, Hejduk, Moreno, and Ekpo all had good shots at goal before Gaven broke through off of a pass from Hejduk to put the crew up 3-1.
I have watched many games in the past few years and saw many awful and uninspired performances. It is great to watch game after game of beautiful attacking soccer. Starting from the back and playing all the way through the midfield and towards Schelotto and Moreno, this is a very complete team. There is not a spot on the field that is need of upgrade. Coach Schmid’s roster construction insures the team has depth is players like Padula, Moreno, Evans, or even Schelotto is out. I can’t wait to see them next week in New England.