The Crew needed a win to keep any real shot at the playoffs alive, but Sporting Kansas City recorded their third win of the year against Columbus and handed a devastating blow to the home side's slim postseason plans.
Ike Opara would get the lone goal in the 17th minute. The visitors would pin the Crew back and earn a corner kick. The corner would find Opara, who knocked down Viana. The header would be cleared by Marshall wide. Zusi sized up another pass and found Opara on the far post. He had a free header as Viana was still down and easily finished.
The Crew would push for an equalizer, but the league's stingiest defense would keep the home side off the board and limit their shots throughout the first half with only four, none on target.
Sporting Kansas City played deeper in the second half, ceding possession to the Crew. Columbus would ultimately take a 71-29 edge with the ball, but still didn't trouble ‘keeper Jimmy Nielson, putting only one of their eight second half shots on goal.
The loss all but ends the Crew's playoff chances. They remain two points behind Chicago in fifth place, but are off next week while Chicago, Philadelphia, Houston and New England all make up the game they have in hand. If the results go against the Crew, they could be knocked out of the playoff chase without taking the field.
Columbus now stands at 12-15-5 with 41 points on the year. The Crew are now assured of their first losing season since 2007 and are likely to miss the postseason for the second straight year. A tough night for the team, staff, and the fans.