With Saturday's commanding 3-0 win over the Chicago Fire, the Crew saw positive moment across this week's Power Rankings. The Black & Gold's highest placing in Week 31 was in the number 13 spot of MLSSoccer.com's rankings. Full rankings from three national outlets are below.
MLSoccer.com: 13th (14th)
ESPN FC: 15th (16th)
Sports Illustrated: 14th (16th)
Major League Soccer and EA Sports unveiled their FIFA14 MLS Covers on Tuesday afternoon on the heels of the game's midnight release. Like the 2013 version, Federico Higuaín graces the cover for the Black & Gold on FIFA 14.
To download the cover, follow these instructions:
1. Click on the cover to the right.
2. Click "Options" at the bottom of the photo viewer
3. Click "Download"
4. Save to hard drive
5. Print and enjoy!
FIFA14 is in stores now.
The Black & Gold travel to Texas on Sunday (8:30 p.m. ET / FOX Sports Ohio) for their only meeting with FC Dallas this season. The Crew evened up the all-time series between the two clubs at 17-17-8 across all competitions last season with a 2-1 victory in Columbus. Before the Black & Gold and the Hoops meet on Sunday, let's take a look back at last year's match.
The home side was put on its heels early when Fabian Castillo slipped past the Crew defense to put Dallas ahead 1-0 in the 22nd minute. Momentum shifted in the 63rd minute when FC Dallas defender Zach Loyd was booked for his second yellow card, putting his side down to 10 men. Four minutes later, Justin Meram found the net for the first time in his young career to even things up at 1-1 and insire his team to push for a winner. In the 72nd minute, Nemanja Vukovic and Sebastian Miranda connected on a corner kick with the Chilean defender heading home the winner from 20 yards out. The strike helped the Crew retain the Lamar Hunt Pioneer Cup in what would be the final match in which both clubs were owned by Hunt Sports Group.
Crew winger Dominic Oduro has been nominated for AT&T Goal of the Week honors for the second consecutive week for his 15th-minute strike capped off with a celebratory slice of Papa John's pizza against the Chicago Fire on Saturday. Oduro is up against the likes of Vancouver forward Camilo Sanvezzo, the Portland Timbers' Diego Valeri and LA Galaxy's Juninho.
Text G4 to 22442 or VOTE ONLINE to help Oduro win the Week 30 crown.
Fill out the information below to receive a SPECIAL OFFER from Papa John's in celebration of Oduro's team-leading 11th goal of the season.
Prior to the USA vs. Mexico World Cup Qualifier at Crew Stadium on September 10th, MLS WORKS partnered with the Columbus Crew to conduct a Crew Massive Makeover of the Linden Village Green Space Community Garden.
Crew midfielder Tony Tchani has been nominated for MLSSoccer.com's weekly Top 3 Performers following the Black & Gold's win over the rival Chicago Fire.Tchani assisted on Bernardo Anor's counter-attack goal in the 76th minute while winning 13 headers and five tackles in central midifield.
Tchani's competition this week includes Sporting KC's C.J. Sapong, Portland Timbers' Diego Valeri and the San Jose Earthquakes' Steven Lenhart among others.
Saturday’s match marks the 50th regular-season meeting between the Crew and the Fire dating back to 1998. The Crew has secured points in 25 of those meetings, posting a 12-24-13 record. Interim Head Coach Brian Bliss did not face the Fire when with the Wizards as a player in 1998 but did see Chicago in his previous interim role with Kansas City in 2006, falling to the Fire in the lone meeting.
While all eyes in Crew Stadium were on witnessing a sold-out soccer crowd in Columbus on September 10, Central Ohio tuned in to the match in droves from its homes. Watching the 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifier, Columbus was the highest-rated market in the country for this game (5.1 rating) with Miami-Ft. Lauderdale was second with a 3.3 share. Overall, the match was the second-most viewed USMNT qualifier in ESPN history (2,243,000 viewers), and combined with the UniMas Spanish-language broad- cast the match drew a combined audience of more than 7 million viewers – second only to the March 26, 2013 match between the USMNT and Mexico at Azteca.
Federico Higuain now leads the team with three game-winning assists in 2013. His seventh and eighth assists of the season were crucial, providing the game-tying and game-winning assists in a must-win affair in Montreal. In 39 career games for the Crew, Higuain has recorded 14 goals and 15 assists, with five game-winning goals and five game-winning assists.
END OF A TREND
Last Saturday’s 2-1 victory snapped a recent trend of scorelines that either helped or plagued the Black & Gold for a six-week span ... from August 10 through September 7, the Crew played to six shutout results ... on August 10 and August 17, the Black & Gold kept the Red Bulls and Toronto FC off of the scoreboard respectively in 2-0 wins ... then, a two-match losing streak saw a reversal of goal-scoring fortune as the Crew was shut-out 4-0 on August 24 at Real Salt Lake and a 1-0 loss to Seattle on August 31 ... the streak continued as the Crew defeated Houston, 2-0, on September 4 before a 3-0 defeat at Sporting KC on September 7 ... that trend seemed likely to continue with the Impact up 1-0 last Saturday before a pair of second-half goals gave the Crew a 2-1 win.
COMEBACK KIDS ...
The Black & Gold’s 2-1 win over Eastern Conference-leading Montreal did more than just put the Crew back in the hunt for playoff contention ... the win accomplished something the club had been unable to do all season: win after its opponent scored the match’s opening goal ... prior to last Saturday, the Crew was 0-11-3 in 2013 after conceding the opening strike, giving the Crew its first comeback win of 2013.
... AND A LITTLE LATE-GAME MAGIC
Dominic Oduro’s game-winning goal in the 78th minute on Saturday at Montreal sealed a 2-1 win for the Black & Gold and also provided some much needed late-game magic for the Crew ... Oduro’s goal was the team’s first game-winning or game-tying goal after the 75th minute in 2013 ... in a welcomed change with respect to goals of that nature in the final 15 minutes, the Crew had previously allowed six game-winning goals against and three game-tying goals against already in 2013.
SOMETHING IN THE HALFTIME SPEECH
Whatever Interim Head Coach Brian Bliss said in the halftime locker room in Montreal last Saturday clearly worked ... with his club down 1-0 to the Eastern Conference-leading Impact, Bliss’ Crew scored a pair of goals in the second 45 to give the Crew a 2-1 win ... the victory was the Crew’s first of the season when trailing at halftime ... previously, the club was 0-8-2 overall when trailing at half, including a frustrating 0-6-0 record when trailing after the first 45 minutes on the road.
THE FIGHT FOR THE POSTSEASON
With five matches remaining, the Crew remains in the hunt for the playoffs this year with hopes to return to postseason play after an absence in 2012 ... of the five remaining matches, four of the tilts are against Eastern Conference opponents, including a crucial home-and-home series with New England to wrap-up the year ... the club’s lone Western Conference match is next Sunday at FC Dallas.