Columbus is coming off short rest after playing 120 minutes plus a penalty shootout on Thursday night. This team will have to push through the heavy legs that come with playoff soccer, short rest, and travel. Gregg Berhalter will have to cobble together a lineup possibly without Pedro Santos and Niko Hansen while managing the minutes of some players, like Federico Higuain, who went the distance just three days ago.
The Red Bulls come into MAPFRE with a full week of rest. They have their set lineup and will be fresh after watching the knockout round at home. Bradley Wright Phillips leads a powerful offense with 20 goals and eight assists. Daniel Royer added 11 more this season. The defense is one of the best in the league as Tim Parker, Kemar Lawrence, Michael Murillo, and Aaron Long have led a team that only allowed a league best 33 goals on the season.
89’ Santos with a rocket that Robles has to dive to full extension to save. CLOSE.
86’ Crew SC substitution: Lalas Abubakar is in for Meram.
80’ Santos had a chance to cross the ball and find a teammate in the box, but he rabonaed the ball and puts it behind for a goal kick.
74’ Another good cross form RBNY. Etienne looking for Wright-Phillips but Jonathan slides to put it behind for a corner.
67’ Crew SC substitution: Pedro Santos on for Argudo.
59’ Crew come back the other way and Afful ends up with a cross pulled back. It just misses Higuain. Then a great ball puts Royer in on a break and Steffen comes way out of his box and slides to deny it. Great play for the Crew goalkeeper.
58’ Murillo cuts the ball back in the penalty box. Jonathan has to step up and make an important clearance.
56’ Valenzuela with good ball over the top looking Meram. Parker just able to get there before the Crew SC winger.
46’ Crew SC kick off and the second half begins.
46’ Crew SC substitution: Mullins off, Federico Higuain on.
HT: Crew SC 0 RBNY 0
43’ Crew with some good possession, but again, the final ball can’t find ahead. This one came from Trapp.
31’ Valenzuela picks up a silly yellow card for kicking the ball into the advertising signs after committing a foul.
27’ CLOSE from RBNY. The header off the corner hits the post, Steffen’s head and is cleared.
26’ Another good chance for RBNY. Wright-Phillips looking for the back post but Jonathan is able to clear.
21’ Meram plays a through ball to Valenzuela on the left flank. The fullback puts a cross into the six-yard box but Zardes puts it over.
17’ Meram gets in behind. His cross from the end line though is right to Robles.
8’ Mullins runs into the back of a defender and gets the foul. Crew have a dangerous free kick opportunity.
2’ Zardes with a good couple of touches to spring into the attack. His shot from outside the box is wide of the mark though.
1’ We’re underway!
Ralph Schudel looks the best team in the league and thinks Crew SC have to be very strong at the back. Two players fueled the win in D.C. as Gaston Sauro showed he’s back from injury. The Black & Gold’s playoff future begins and ends with the Maestro.
Injuries & Suspensions:
Columbus Crew SC: The team picked up two injuries on Thursday evening. Niko Hansen is questionable with an ankle injury and Pedro Santos is training again after his bruised shin. Mike Grella who is remains out. Federico Higuain and Eduardo Sosa are on yellow cards and the next carried a one game suspension.
New York Red Bulls: The injury list is long. Midfielders Florian Valot, Vincent Bezecourt, and Ben Mines are out for the season. Joining them on the season ending injury list are defenders Kyle Duncan and Tommy Redding. Marc Rzatkowski’s calf strain has him questionable.
How to watch:
Date: Thursday, November 4th, 2018, 3:00 p.m. ET
Venue: MAPFRE Stadium (Columbus, Ohio)
TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes