PREVIEW: Crew SC faces Orlando City with playoff seeding at stake

The Black & Gold travel to the Sunshine State to face Orlando City SC for one of their final meetings in the 2017 regular season this Sunday with a special 5 p.m. ET kickoff.

 

After defeating D.C. United in Week 30, Crew SC officially clinched a spot in the Audi 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs, unlike the Lions, whose postseason dreams came to an end after their recent scoreless draw against FC Dallas. The Lions will take on Columbus for the third time this season, but this time with nothing to lose.

The first time the Eastern Conference foes matched up this season, Orlando travelled to MAPFRE Stadium on April 1 only to be fooled by Crew SC’s Justin Meram. The Midfielder’s brace (13’, 77’) was enough to secure three points for the Black & Gold en route to Orlando’s first defeat of the season.

The Black & Gold ventured south on August 19 for their second go-around with City. This time, the points were split in a 1-1 draw thanks to Lalas Abubakar’s header in the 35th minute and Giles Barnes' Orlando equalizer in the 67th.

This will be the final meeting between the two clubs for the 2017 season. The Black & Gold hold a slight edge over Orlando with their 2-1-2 all-time record. Despite already clinching a playoff berth, Crew SC will look to #ClaimGlory and overtake the Chicago Fire and Atlanta United FC in the Eastern Conference standings to earn a home match in the playoffs. Final postseason seeding will be determined in the upcoming weeks as Crew SC and other MLS clubs conclude the regular season.

Columbus returns to the postseason for the third time in four seasons under Sporting Director and Head Coach Gregg Berhalter.

With two regular-season contests remaining, Crew SC is assured of finishing no lower than sixth place in the Eastern Conference by virtue of its win against D.C. United at MAPFRE Stadium on September 30. The win against D.C. United was the Black & Gold’s 12th regular-season home victory of 2017, setting a new club record for most regular-season wins at home.

Final postseason seeding will be determined in the coming weeks as the Black & Gold (15-12-5, 50 points) conclude the regular season along with all other MLS clubs.

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