On Saturday night, Columbus Crew SC twice came from behind against Sporting Kansas City and late in the match it looked like the game would end in a 2-2 draw. That is until the recently acquired Jack McInerney tapped home an easy finish in the 88th minute for his first goal since joining the club.
McInerney's strike gave Columbus a much-needed three points at home after managing only a draw in Wednesday's contest at MAPFRE Stadium. Here's a look back at the moment of the match that sent the sellout crowd home ecstatic.
The play started along the back line with club captain Michael Parkhurst, who elected to play direct. Typically the Black & Gold like to play simple passes out of the back, but late in the match Parkhurst was looking to get forward and found attacking maestro Federico Higuain with space in the 18-yard box.
Likely due to rarity of long balls by Crew SC, the Kansas City defense lost Higuain while attempting to get back and keep track of McInerney in the middle. Columbus' Designated Player allowed the ball to bounce before firing a difficult spinning half volley, forcing a diving save from goalkeeper Tim Melia and allowing McInerney the poacher to clean it up.
The uncharacteristic long ball certainly helped on the play, but Higuain really made it all possible. His run in behind the defense allows Parkhurst to go long, but the skill to turn and hit a bouncing shot on frame should not be lost. Also, the power he got behind, despite an untraditional shot, keeps Melia from catching and holding the ball.
Finally, it's the knowledge of McInerney to anticipate where the ball might fall if there's a rebound and to be in the right position. A simple touch it was from No. 30, but players miss simple touches all the time. The composure McInerney showed there is what makes him a dangerous player in front of goal and gave Crew SC the victory.