US Open Cup: Crew knocked out, but injury to Glauber could prove to be bigger blow
Nothing went as planned for the Columbus Crew in Illinois this week.
It began with their fourth-round match of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup at Chicago on Wednesday being postponed 16-and-a-half hours because of severe weather.
Then, when the game was played Thursday midday, an ad hoc Crew lineup became more scrambled when center back Gláuber had to leave in the 9th minute because of a knee injury.
Not surprisingly, and despite a historic goal by Konrad Warzycha, the Crew fell out of the tournament named for their founder after a 2-1 defeat to the Fire at Toyota Park.
Crew coach Robert Warzycha said the extent of the injury is unknown but that Gláuber is expected to have an MRI on Friday.
"He landed awkward. There's some swelling in the knee," Robert Warzycha said in a phone interview. "[The injury] put us behind the eight ball because we had to shift some players around. It really changed the game for us."
Forward Dominic Oduro replaced the Brazilian defender to start the reshuffling. Justin Meram moved from up top to the flank; Ethan Finlay switched to right back from the midfield and right back Eric Gehrig took over Glauber's spot.
"There was bit of adversity," goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum told MLSsoccer.com by phone. "We have to deal with what we've got."
The loss of Gláuber was the second major blow to the Crew in as many Open Cup games. Midfielder Eddie Gaven suffered a season-ending torn ACL on May 29 in a win vs. the Dayton Dutch Lions.
Even with the risk of having another starter injured, head coach Warzycha planned to field many of them against the Fire but that all changed when storms rolled through the Chicago area on Wednesday.
The Crew, unlike the Fire who are off until June 19, have a game Saturday against Montreal (7:30 pm ET, watch on MLS Live) so Oduro, forward Federico Higuaín and midfielders Matías Sánchez and Danny O'Rourke did not start the rescheduled match.
Yet the Crew took the lead when Konrad Warzycha scored on a header off a Ben Speas free kick in the 22nd minute, to mark the first time a father-son duo had each scored in the Open Cup in the modern era.
"I got inside of my man and Ben delivered a good ball," Konrad Warzycha said. "I tried to make contact and put it on goal. Luckily it went in."
The elder Warzycha scored for Columbus in the 56th minute of a 3-2 semifinal loss to Rochester at Virginia Beach, Va., on Sept. 1, 1999.