After losing a handful of players to international duty, which lead to the fist loss of 2019, Columbus Crew SC gain back those that were missed this weekend as they host Atlanta United. Columbus come into this matchup after dropping three points to the Philadelphia Union, getting the first loss under first-year head coach Caleb Porter. With the defeat under their belts, the Black & Gold look to put on a good show for those in attendance back at MAPFRE Stadium against the defending MLS Cup champions.
For Atlanta, the road to repeat has not been easy so far. United is still struggling to find their form, looking for the team’s first win of the season. Since the appointment of Frank de Boer, the Five Stripes are 0-1-2 with a -2 goal differential. Atlanta is well rested heading into this match after having a bye week. Maybe the time off is what was needed after they crashed out of the CONCACAF Champions League.
What to read:
This week, Massive Report’s Guilherme Torres looked at how time with the Iraq National Team, including a goal and an assist, could be good for Justin Meram. Crew fullback Harrison Afful is set to make his 100th appearance for the Black & Gold on Saturday night. The Massive Report staff is certainly less confident in this team after last week’s performance with our game predictions. Mike Crosky broke down Atlanta United while Patrick Murphy spoke with Sydney Hunte of Dirty South Soccer to get a better feel of what’s going on with the defending champs.
FINAL: Crew win 2-0 over Atlanta in a wet, sloppy game.
86’ Steffen blanks Brek Shea to keep the shutout going.
81’ Crew sub: Meram replaces Santos.
73’ Crew sub: Higuain comes out for Clark. The Crew are battening down and play out this 2-0 lead in miserable conditions.
57’ Higuain takes the PK facing the south end and Guzan parries the excellent attempt. Still 2-0 Crew over Atlanta.
56’ Zardes brought down in the penalty area and draws the PK.
53’ Robinho hits the crossbar and Zardes’ followup chance is blocked. A great chance at a game ending goal.
46’ Still raining heavily as the second half kicks off.
Halftime: Crew head into halftime with the 2-0 lead in the rain.
39’ GOAL GYASI! Higuain sent Robinho into space. The cross is stabbed home by Zardes’ left foot. 2-0 to the home team.
35’ Barco with a shot and a miraculous Steffen save keeps it 1-0.
31’ Hector Jimenez has replaced Harrison Afful as the game resumes.
31’ The game has been stopped at 30:28 due to severe weather.
30’ Conditions are really deteriorating as the rain isn’t slowing.
I'll say it. English soccer fans wouldn't sit in this weather.— J.D. Smith (@DegenerateTBone) March 31, 2019
Columbus has the most hardcore fans of anywhere. pic.twitter.com/maOSE23ABn
23’ Steffen comes up with a big stop on a Gressel header. Martinez tries to follow up, but he’s offside.
20’ Ezequiel Barco sends his free kick just high over Steffen’s goal.
9’ Sloppy game so far. Neither team taking advantage, but plenty of turnovers.
2’ GOAL! SANTOS cleans up! Perfect start as the Portuguese winger cleans up a loose ball in the box. 1-0 Crew.
1’ Kickoff on a rainy night at MAPFRE.
How To Watch:
Date: Saturday, March 30, 2019, 7:30 pm
Venue: MAPFRE Stadium (Columbus, Ohio)
TV: SportsTime Ohio
Radio: 1460 AM ESPN Columbus, columbuscrewsc.com
Come chat with other Crew SC fans and staff members of Massive Report during the match in the comment section below.