Fresh off Saturday’s inspiring comeback win, the Columbus Crew are back on the road Wednesday night at Charlotte FC to resume a match that originally started on July 30.
Three Things to Know
16 – Wednesday night’s matchup wasn’t on the Crew’s initial schedule, but it might come at the perfect time for the Black & Gold. Initially, Columbus and MLS newcomers Charlotte FC kicked off on July 30, but the match stopped after 16 minutes due to inclement weather. So, when the teams square off once again, they’ll play the final 74 minutes of the match with the same lineups from the original game. At the time, head coach Caleb Porter deployed the following 4-2-3-1:
Goalkeeper: Eloy Room
Defenders: Steven Moreira, Jonathan Mensah, Josh Williams, Pedro Santos
Midfielders: Darlington Nagbe, Aidan Morris, Luis Díaz, Lucas Zelarayán, Derrick Etienne Jr.
Forward: Cucho Hernández
45 – Get ready for a crazy final week of the regular season. The Crew sits eighth in the Eastern Conference currently, but positioning can drastically change between now and Sunday afternoon. Three teams have 45 points, including Orlando City SC, who Columbus plays on Sunday. Fifth-place FC Cincinnati has 46 points but has played 33 games. “(There’s) a lot of scoreboard watching this time of year,” Porter said after beating the Red Bulls. “Everybody does it. We do it, the players do it. But I always say it doesn’t matter. You gotta go and win the next game.”
9 + 10 – While the Crew is on a short week for recovery, Porter pointed out Saturday night that plenty of attacking playmakers are entering the Charlotte match with plenty of rest. Cucho is back after serving his one-game suspension, and Zelarayán only played the final 40 minutes against New York. Etienne Jr. played half that, but still had enough time to score twice in four minutes. The Black & Gold have a tremendous opportunity ahead to build momentum at the most important time of the season. The club’s attacking threats will also be at full strength.
When They Last Met
Again, Wednesday night is technically the same game that started in late July. The last time these clubs played a full 90 minutes, however, was a 1-1 draw at Lower.com Field on June 18. Erik Hurtado gave the home side the lead in the 41st minute before Andre Shinyashiki scored the equalizer in the 50th minute. One thing to note: Jacen Russel-Rowe and Mohamed Farsi made their MLS debuts that night and became the first Crew 2 players to feature for the first team.
Who: Columbus Crew at Charlotte FC
When: Wednesday, Oct. 5 at 7 p.m.
Where: Bank of America Stadium
How to Watch: Bally Sports Ohio, MLS LIVE on ESPN+ (Outside of Market)
How to Listen: 97.1 The Fan (English), ColumbusCrew.com (Spanish)
Current Standings: Columbus Crew – Eighth in Eastern Conference; Charlotte FC – Ninth in Eastern Conference
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