Columbus Crew SC conclude the team’s Carolina Challenge Cup against in-state rivals FC Cincinnati in hopes to clinch their third consecutive title in the preseason tournament. With back-to-back 1-1 draws against the Chicago Fire and Charleston Battery, the Black & Gold now look to win big before heading back to Columbus for the club’s home opener on March 2 against the New York Red Bulls.
The final preseason tuneup marks the first ever meeting between the Crew and FC Cincinnati as Major League Soccer sides. The in-state rivals met for the first time ever in the 2017 U.S. Open Cup. Cincinnati won the game 1-0 at Nippert Stadium, sending the Black & Gold packing from the Open Cup.
Since this game is such a big one — not only for the title of Carolina Challenge Cup champions, but a small preview of the MLS Hell Is Real derby between the clubs — head coach Caleb Porter will look to play his best players against the squad under the direction of Alan Koch.
Columbus currently sit second in the Challenge Cup standings, two points back from FCC.
On the other side, Cincinnati are looking to capture their first hardware of their inaugural MLS campaign before heading to the Pacific Northwest to take on the Seattle Sounders in their season opener.
Carolina Challenge Cup Tiebreakers
- Head-to-head result
- Goal differential
- Higher number of goals scored
- Higher number of wins
- If the teams are equal after the above criteria, the trophy will be shared between the teams at the top of the rankings
Columbus Crew Lineup:
FC Cincinnati Lineup:
How To Watch:
Time: 5 p.m. ET
Venue: MUSC Health Stadium; Charleston, South Carolina
Engage with other Columbus Crew fans and our staff here at Massive Report throughout the game. We will doing a live game thread and interact with readers during the game. Do you think this matchup will exemplify the type of match these two teams will play during the regular season?