DESPITE 2013 LOSSES, BLACK & GOLD HAVE REVS’ NUMBER ...
Saturday’s meeting will be the 61st regular-season meeting between the two teams, the Crew’s most-faced opponent during the season since 1996 ... the Crew’s 29 wins (29-20-11) against the Revs are the most versus any opponent in Black & Gold history, more than D.C. United (24 wins against), New York (24 wins against) or Sporting KC (21 wins).
... AND A STRONG STRETCH AGAINST THE REVS HAS HELPED
Although the Revs won the regular-season series in 2013 with three victories, the Black & Gold have found success against the Revs over the last seven seasons ... in the last 18 meetings, dating back to 2007, the Crew is 8-6-4 against the Revs ... during that stretch, the Revs won the regular-season series once: last year ... other than that, the Crew has won the regular-season series four times and the two teams have split results two other times ... from 1996 through 2000, and again from 2002 through 2006, the two conference foes met four times a year.
THE CAPTAIN & THE ALL-STAR...
Major League Soccer announced on July 19 that Columbus Crew captain and de- fender Michael Parkhurst has been named to the 23-man roster for the 2014 AT&T MLS All-Star Game ... the experienced roster will take on Bayern Munich on August 6 at Providence Park, home of the Portland Timbers (live on ESPN 2, UniMas, and in Canada on TSN and RDS starting at 9:30 p.m. ET) ... the Rhode Island native is the first Crew player to be named to the All-Star roster in four years and is the first selection since the duo of Guillermo Barros Schelotto and Chad Marshall in 2010 ... Parkhurst has played in two previous MLS All-Star matches.
... PARKHURST RETURNS TO NEW ENGLAND
Saturday’s clash is the first for Crew Captain Michael Parkhurst against his former club, New England ... drafted by the Revs in the first round (ninth overall) in the 2005 MLS SuperDraft, Parkhurst played every single minute of his first season as a professional and earned MLS Rookie of the Year honors en route to the first of three consecutive MLS Cup Final appearances with New England ... following the 2006 season – in which he was named MLS Humanitarian of the Year – the defender was a part of the club’s first-ever title in 2007 when the Revs secured the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup ... that season, Parkhurst was also named MLS Defender of the Year and a member of MLS Best XI ... 2007 also marked the first of two consecutive seasons in which he earned the MLS Fair Play Award, as the defender was not issued a red card in four seasons of action ... with Parkhurst, the Revs won the 2008 Superliga title the following season in his final campaign in New England.
Neil Sika joined 95.5 The Game's Matt Finkes to preview Wednesday's friendly with Crystal Palace FC.
CREW WELCOMES THE EAGLES TO COLUMBUS...
The tilt marks the first-ever meeting between Crystal Palace FC and the Columbus Crew, and the Eagles are the tenth English opponent to face the Black & Gold ... the Crew is 10-5-2 all-time in international exhibitions and Wednesday will be the 12th international friendly held at Crew Stadium ... the first international opponent to take on the Black & Gold at Crew Stadium was Newcastle United as the two teams played to a 2-2 draw on July 26, 2000 in front of 18,212 fans.
... AND ANOTHER TEST AGAINST ENGLISH OPPOSITION
Wednesday’s match is the tenth international friendly against English opponents ... after a 2-1 win over Stoke City at Crew Stadium in 2012, the Crew fell last year by a final score of 2-1 in an exhibition against Wigan Athletic ... the loss moved the team’s record to 3-4-2 against English opposition ... previously, the Crew downed Leeds United 2-1 in 1997; drew Newcastle United 2-2 in 2000; defeated Fulham 2-1 in 2005; drew Everton 1-1 in 2006; lost to Aston Villa 3-1 in 2007; fell to West Ham United 3-1 in 2008; lost to Newcastle United 3-0 in 2011 before the 2012 Stoke City victory.
A PRE-SEASON TUNE-UP FOR CRYSTAL PALACE FC AFTER 2013-2014 ...
Crystal Palace FC’s pre-season tour includes an initial stop at Crew Stadium where the Eagles look to tune-up for the upcoming season in the Barclays Premier League ... Crystal Palace finished 11th out of 20 clubs in the English Premier League this past season, after earning promotion following a victory in the 2013 Championship playoffs ... a penalty by Kevin Phillips sent Crystal Palace to the Premier League for the first time since the 2004-05 season, and the club is set to remain there in 2014-15.
... WHILE BLACK & GOLD KEEP MLS PLAYOFFS IN SIGHT
The Crew enters the international friendly fresh off of a 2-1 win against the Montreal Impact ... the victory – the Crew’s first since May 24 – pushes the club to just a single point behind the New York Red Bulls for the fifth and final MLS Cup Playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, with the club’s next League match taking place on Saturday, July 26 against fellow postseason contender New England.
Steve Clark's double-save to help the Crew to a 2-1 victory over the Montreal Impact is nominated for Save of the Week. Clark's competitors this week are Houston's Tally Hall, Philadelphia's Zac MacMath, New York's Luis Robles and New England's Bobby Shuttleworth.
Voting runs until 2:59 a.m. ET on Friday and the winner is announced on Friday.
For his pair of goals in the Crew's 2-1 home victory over the Montreal Impact on Saturday, midfielder Bernardo Anor was named to MLSsoccer.com's Team of the Week. The recognition marks the second Team of the Week selection for the Venezuelan this season, as he was also honored following his brace against the Philadelphia Union on March 22.