The Columbus Crew Media Day was a cold one right up until the event moved inside for food and interviews with Gregg Berhalter, Mark McCullers, and certain players.
The practice portion began with simple stretches followed by 6 v. 2 keep away drills. The team started with two touch for five minutes before switching to one touch. After a set of that, the drill was expanded to 10 v. 5 keep away in a larger space with four teams that rotated in and out.
The goalkeepers were on the north end of Columbus Crew Stadium's pitch working separately. The drill required them to make a stop on the end line facing the sideline then respond quickly to volleys from the center of the top of the box. They repeated this drill, alternating where the shots form the top of the box came from.
The ‘keepers also worked on their distribution. In one shot stopping drill, each goalkeeper had to collect the ball and throw it to a designated assistant coach. They then worked on playing short goal kicks and balls on the ground from one side of the box to a player - where an outside back would be - on the opposite side of the field.
The majority of the team was working on the other end of the pitch in an offense v. defense drill. The offense had the forwards, midfield, and two outside backs attacking a back four. The offense looked to get the ball wide, working it across the midfield frequently to switch the field and ultimately looking to score a goal. When the defense got possession, their job was to get it out of the defensive end while keeping possession - not just clearing the ball.
Dominic Oduro and Jario Arrieta worked with the goalkeepers to provide shots. The assistant coaches would deliver crosses and Oduro and Arrieta worked through different runs and attempted to finish one time. After aerial crosses, they worked on low deliveries Aaron Schoenfeld and Adam Bedell swapped places with them and did similar drills with the ‘keepers.
The final drill of the day was the most complicated. The team was divided up into four lines spread across the top of the box. A shot came from a central player first, then a wide player on one side, before one of the central players played a ball wide. The cross came in to the two central players who made runs into the box. They attempted a finish followed by a shot from the other outside player.
Players of note
Wil Trapp - Looked good in possession in all the drills and had a few nice finishes.
Waylon Francis - Made good runs outside and delivered nice balls. Smart in possession.
Adam Bedell - Was good with the ball at his feet and had some nice finishes. Used his height well in crossing drills, but could also finish on lower, driven crosses.