COLUMBUS– Columbus Crew today selected three players in the 2023 Major League Soccer SuperDraft presented by adidas. In the First Round, the Black & Gold selected forward Maximilian Arfsten (San Jose Earthquakes II) with the 14th overall pick. Following a trade in which the Crew acquired the Houston Dynamo’s first-round pick (27th overall) in exchange for $50,000 in General Allocation Money for 2023, the Club selected defender Xavier Zengue (University of Dayton).

With the Club’s final selection of the evening, the Crew picked midfielder Clay Holstad (University of Kentucky) with the 43rd overall pick (Second Round).

Maximilian Arfsten

Arfsten appeared in 24 matches (21 starts) for San Jose Earthquakes II in MLS NEXT Pro action this year, scoring nine goals and tallying six assists. He recorded two multi-goal games, scoring braces against Colorado on May 15 and Minnesota on Sept. 18. The Fresno native played collegiately at UC Davis, starting 16 of 19 games his freshman year, earning 2019 Big West Conference All-Freshman Team honors. In 2021, his final collegiate season, Arfsten scored eight goals and tallied seven assists.

Xavier Zengue

Zengue represented the University of Dayton from 2019-22, making 57 appearances while registering two goals and eight assists. During his tenure with the Flyers, Zengue was named to the A-10 All-Rookie Team in 2019, A-10 Commissioner’s Honor Roll in 2021. He was also awarded Scholar All-America Second Team by the United Soccer Coaches, Second Team All-Southeast Region, First Team All-Ohio and Academic All-Ohio, and Second Team All-Conference in 2022.

Clay Holstad

From 2018-22, Holstad appeared in 85 total games for the University of Kentucky, scoring five goals and adding seven assists. During his time with the Wildcats, the midfielder was named to the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll and Fall SEC Academic Honor Roll (2019), C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll and Fall SEC Academic Honor Roll (2020), and the Fall SEC Academic Honor Roll (2021).

Crew players are set to report for entrance physicals and testing on Jan. 6. Head Coach Wilfried Nancy will assemble the group for the first time and train from Jan. 9-15 in the seasonal bubble encompassing the field at Historic Crew Stadium. The team will then travel to South Florida for the first trip of the preseason, where the Black & Gold will train in Port St. Lucie from Jan. 16-27. The Crew returns to Columbus and will train in-market from Jan. 28 – Feb. 5, before heading to Fort Lauderdale for the second trip of the preseason (Feb. 6-18).  

The Black & Gold are set to open the 2023 MLS season on the road against the Philadelphia Union on Saturday, Feb. 25 and hosts D.C. United for the home opener at Lower.com Field on Saturday, March 4 at 7:30 p.m. ET.  

Fans looking to secure their seat for the home opener can purchase the 2023 Season Premier Holiday Pack, which includes two limited-edition scarves and four tickets to the Crew’s match at Lower.com Field on March 4, starting at just $159. Perfect for gifting, Holiday Packs can be purchased here.   

Single-game tickets are now on-sale for the general public and are available here.  

Soccer fans looking to experience Crew matches have a number of options as Season Ticket Membership for the 2023 season, which are currently on sale, includes benefits such as a subscription to Apple TV’s MLS Season Pass, exclusive, member-only events, a discount at the Crew Shop, monthly, interest free payment plans, the ability to purchase discounted parking, pre-sale access to all events at Lower.com Field, Historic Crew Stadium and FirstEnergy Stadium, and a dedicated account manager and service representative. Fans interested in purchasing Season Ticket Memberships are encouraged to call 614-447-2739, email seasontickets@columbuscrew.com, or visit www.columbuscrew.com/tickets/membershipsto get connected with a Season Ticket Member representative.      

Name: Maximilian Arfsten 
Position: Forward 
Height: 6’1” 
Hometown: Fresno, Calif. 
Drafted: Selected in the First Round (27th overall) of the MLS SuperDraft 2023 on December 21, 2022 
Previous Experience: UC Davis (2019-2021), San Jose Earthquakes II (2022) 

Name: Xavier Zengue 
Position: Defender 
Height: 6’  
Hometown: North Oaks, Minn.  
Drafted: Selected in the First Round (27th overall) of the MLS SuperDraft 2023 on December 21, 2022 
Previous Experience: University of Dayton (2019-22) 

Name: Clay Holstad 
Position: Midfielder 
Height: 6’2” 
Hometown: Birmingham, Ala.  
Drafted: Selected in the Second Round (43rd overall) of the MLS SuperDraft 2023 on December 21, 2022 
Previous Experience: University of Kentucky (2018-22)

ABOUT COLUMBUS CREW

Columbus Crew is the first club in Major League Soccer. The Crew is operated by Haslam Sports Group and the Edwards Family. The Black & Gold are the 2021 Campeones Cup winners. The Club has won two MLS Cup championships in 2008 and 2020, one Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup in 2002, as well as MLS Supporters’ Shield titles in 2004, 2008 and 2009. The 2022 campaign was the Crew’s 27thseason in MLS as well as the Club’s first full season at Lower.com Field.

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