Columbus Crew SC return home for the first leg of the Trillium Cup against Toronto FC on April 15 for an 8 p.m. kickoff at MAPFRE Stadium. The Black & Gold are currently sitting at the top of the Eastern Conference while the Reds are resting in ninth.
Here are some storylines to keep your eyes on:
The Black & Gold host Toronto FC on April 15 at MAPFRE Stadium for an 8 p.m. kickoff. Although the trillium flower is the official wildflower of both Ohio and the Canadian province of Ontario, only one of these Eastern Conference teams will claim the trillium trophy.
Saturday’s match will be the first leg of the Trillium Cup.
The two teams will then play again on May 10 at MAPFRE Stadium and again on May 26 at BMO Field. Columbus has won the Trillium Cup six out of the nine years it has been contested. The two clubs began battling for the trophy during the 2008 campaign and the Black & Gold were victorious in the regular-season series for the first three years of Trillium Cup action.
Justin vs. Justin
There’s no place like home for Crew SC’s midfielder Justin Meram. He has been an essential part of both of the Black & Gold’s home victories. All three of his goals this season have been netted at MAPFRE Stadium. He also has two assists to his name this season.
The other Justin to watch this Saturday will be Toronto's Justin Morrow. Not only is Morrow a versatile lefty that can play left back, left wingback and left center back, he can also find the back of the net. Since 2015, Morrow has scored nine goals in regular season action — more than any other defender over that time span. He is currently tied with Toronto’s Jozy Altidore as the season’s leading scorer with two goals a piece.
Although Toronto FC has not lost a match this season, they haven’t won too many either. Their current record stands at 1-0-5, despite an exciting match against Atlanta United in Week 6 that, unfortunately for them, resulted in yet another draw. The Reds are ninth in the Eastern Conference while the Black & Gold are sitting at the top.
The Black & Gold are still undefeated at MAPFRE Stadium in the 2017 MLS regular season. Saturday’s match will be the 29th all-time meeting between the Great Lakes rivals. Crew SC currently holds an overall 12-6-10 record against the Reds and an 8-3-4 against them at MAPFRE Stadium. The Black & Gold will be coming into the match looking to bounce back from last week’s 1-0 loss against Chicago, and will aim to dish out Toronto’s first loss of the season.