MAPFRE Stadium continues to spell home-field advantage for Columbus Crew SC as the Black & Gold looks for three points and a postseason berth on Sunday, Oct. 28, as part of Decision Day, presented by AT&T.
With a "win and we're in" scenario, Crew SC returns to the Capital City for the first time in nearly a month, eying its sixth win in the last seven home matches. Since mid-June, Crew SC is unbeaten at MAPFRE (5-0-1) while outscoring opponents 10-5 in that span. Overall, Columbus boasts a 10-2-4 home record and is one of 10 MLS teams to reach double-digit home wins this season.
Notably, of those 10 wins, five have come against teams who have clinched an MLS Playoffs spot or are still mathematically eligible.
The comfort of a supporter-filled MAPFRE Stadium on Sunday is an asset that's been four weeks in the waiting for Crew SC.
“Absolutely,” said Sporting Director and Head Coach Gregg Berhalter on if playing at home affects the players’ confidence levels.
“We know we are a strong home team, we know we’ve beaten some good teams at home, we know that we make it very difficult and we keep the game fast at home and we want to do that again on Sunday.”
Crew SC forward and leading-scorer Gyasi Zardes has been a crucial part of Columbus’ success, tallying 14 of his 16 goals at home, including three braces. Zardes, who is nominated for the League’s Comeback Player of the Year & MVP Awards, has scored in four of the last six games at MAPFRE and is one goal away from setting a regular-season personal career-high.
Should Crew SC come away with three points against Minnesota, it could also serve as a launching point – momentum-wise – as Columbus has went on to earn a win or draw in six of nine matches immediately following a home win.
Columbus kicks off against Minnesota at 4:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 28, as a win or Montreal Impact loss OR draw will see the Black & Gold into the MLS Cup Playoffs.