By Brad Friedman
After spending time in England, Kei Kamara has returned to Major League Soccer with a splash.
With 12 regular-season matches left, the Crew SC forward has already surpassed his previous career-high for goals in a single season (11). His 15 goals thus far put him atop the League and earned him a spot in the 2015 MLS All-Star Game.
Whether or not Kamara will register his first ever All-Star goal vs. English Premier League's Tottenham Hotspur F.C. on Wednesday night remains to be seen. In the meantime, we've compiled his five most impressive goals this season so far, though this was no easy task.
If you have any disagreements with the five we've selected, or if you think we've nailed it, let us know by tweeting @ColumbusCrewSC with your feedback. Enjoy!
MLS Power Rankings are posted for Week 21 and Crew SC's 3-3 draw with Toronto FC hasn't affected the Black & Gold's standings much. While the Columbus attack is receiving praise, MLS, Sports Illustrated and Bleacher Report see room for improvements on defense.
MLSsoccer.com has bumped the Black & Gold up a notch from ninth to eighth, but puts them a "cut below the top teams" while they work out some defensive challenges.
SI.com drops Crew SC a spot from eighth to ninth, calling out MLS All-Stars Kei Kamara and Ethan Finlay for their impressive performances.
BleacherReport.com keeps Crew SC in 10th place, stating the Black & Gold's "attack is clicking" while calling out the team's defensive struggles.
By Brad Friedman
Saturday night’s match at MAPFRE Stadium was a shootout, and both Columbus Crew SC and Toronto FC came out with guns blazing.
The two sides combined for six goals, the most in any Crew SC match this season. It was Jozy Altidore’s 89th-minute penalty kick that completed Toronto FC’s second-half comeback and ended the match in a 3-3 draw.
Here, we break the Eastern Conference clash down by the numbers.
Six different players scored on Saturday night and four of them were the usual suspects. Kei Kamara and Ethan Finlay make up the most threatening offensive duo in MLS. Both scored and now combine for 22 goals and 17 assists. Tony Tchani also scored for the Black & Gold. Toronto's dynamic duo of Sebastian Giovinco and the aforementioned Altidore also scored one each. In between both of them, Collen Warner found the back of the net, as well. Goals 3 to 5 were scored with 10 minutes after the break. That’s enough to make your head spin. Six goals is astonishing considering neither club registered more than 14 shots and each put no more than seven shots on frame.
With Giovinco and Kamara both scoring, the League’s leading goal scorers have now combined for a whopping 28 goals (15 for Kamara, 13 for Giovinco). In addition, Finlay remains atop MLS in assists with 12 after providing a helper on Tchani’s goal.
Saturday’s match was extremely physical, and it showed with 31 called fouls. Both sides were getting chippy and the match had all of the makings of a rivalry meeting. Officials also handed out five yellow cards, two to Crew SC players (Kamara and Waylon Francis), and three to Toronto FC (Damien Perquis, Warner and Giovinco.)
Saturday night marked Wil Trapp’s 50th start with Crew SC. Though he only returned from injury five matches ago, Trapp went the full 90 for the third consecutive match.