The second open-to-the-public match of Columbus Crew SC's preseason kicks off tonight at 5 p.m. ET at Carolina Challenge Cup-host Charleston Battery's MUSC Health Stadium in Charleston, SC. Streaming live on ColumbusCrewSC.com, the Black & Gold will face the Battery on their home turf in the opening match of Wednesday's #CCC17 doubleheader — the nightcap features the MLS Cup champion Seattle Sounders and MLS-expansion side Atlanta United at 7:30 p.m.
In Saturday's #CCC17 openers, Crew SC came from behind en route to a 2-1 victory, with Federico Higuain welcoming Atlanta United to its first MLS competition with a second-half brace. In the day's second match, Charleston mounted a comeback of its own against Seattle, equalizing in stoppage time to secure a 1-1 draw.
"I think we started a little slow — we were hesitant at first — and I think you could see the rust a little bit," Crew SC Sporting Director and Head Coach Gregg Berhalter said following the match. "But as we got into gear, I was especially pleased with our ball movement and it was a physical performance. We looked strong up until the last minute."
Moving into Wednesday's match against the tournament's only USL opposition, Berhalter said his approach to the match will still be one of introspective evaluation of his team.
On Saturday against the Sounders, the Battery claimed their draw as Kotaro Higashi scored at the death against Seattle. Charleston, still weeks away from opening their regular season, featured five MLS-affiliate Atlanta United players — including goalkeeper Alex Tambakis.
In the preseason round-robin tournament's table, Crew SC (1-0-0, 3 points in #CCC17) sits two points ahead of Seattle (0-0-1, 1 pt.) and Charleston (0-0-1, 1 pt.). Following Wednesday's action, Crew SC will close preseason play on Saturday, Feb. 25, against the Sounders with a 4:30 p.m. ET kickoff.
The match will stream live on ColumbusCrewSC.com.
The 2017 Major League Soccer regular season opens on March 4 against the Chicago Fire at MAPFRE Stadium, presented by MAPFRE Insurance. The full Crew SC preseason and regular schedule can be downloaded and synced on iOS and Android devices.