The MLS Cup playoffs are set to continue Sunday evening at MAPFRE Stadium as the Columbus Crew host Nashville SC in the Eastern conference semifinals. The Crew has had an unexpected week in the buildup with six of the team’s players testing positive for COVID-19. Despite the positive tests, the medical experts of the Black & Gold and Major League Soccer have instilled confidence to everyone that this match can go on safely.
Columbus is fresh off a 3-2 victory last Saturday against the New York Red Bulls in the first round of the playoffs. The Black & Gold commanded the match on all fronts to extend their home record to 10 wins out of 11 matches in 2020. At stake for the Crew is a chance to host the Eastern conference final next Sunday. Columbus became the highest-seed this Tuesday with top-seeds the Philadelphia Union and Toronto FC exiting the competition. It would be quite the outcome for the Crew to win after dealing with COVID-19 positives all week.
Nashville SC has grabbed MLS fans hearts as they continue to build upon their historic inaugural season. Nashville defeated Inter Miami 3-0 in the play-in round at home and then went to Hartford and knocked off the king of the east Toronto FC in an extra-time 1-0 win. The new expansion side dominated TFC throughout and had numerous chances to close the game in regulation. At stake for Nashville is a chance at becoming one of the few expansion teams in North American sports history to make the conference finals.
Injuries and suspensions:
Crew: Goalkeepers Eloy Room and Jon Kempin, Defenders Vito Wormgoor and Waylon Francis, Midfielder Sebastian Berhalter, and Attackers Derrick Etienne Jr. and Miguel Berry are OUT.
Nashville: Defender Jack Maher and Midfielder Anibal Godoy are OUT.
How to watch:
Date: Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, 8:00 p.m. ET
Venue: MAPFRE Stadium - Columbus, Ohio
TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes, TSN4, TVA Sports
Radio: English: 97.1 The Fan - Spanish: Columbus Crew YouTube
Streaming: ESPN App
Around the MLS Cup Playoffs:
The Eastern conference semifinals started Sunday afternoon with another MLS playoff upset. No. 8 seed New England Revolution advanced to the Eastern conference final with a 3-1 victory in Orlando over the 4th-seeded Orlando City. Revs led 2-1 at half and the match started getting dramatic in the second-half.
City went down to 10-men and then earned a penalty to try and tie it. Nani’s kick was saved by Matt Turner. This is the first-time since 2014 that New England has made the conference final.
The West will not start their conference semifinals till Tuesday when defending champions the Seattle Sounders host upset-minded FC Dallas. Wednesday will be the final conference semi with the No. 1 seed Sporting Kansas City welcoming No. 4 Minnesota United. The winners of these matches will play Sunday Dec 6 on conference final day.
MLS Cup Playoffs Bracket & Schedule:
4 Orlando City 1-3 8 New England Revolution
3 Columbus Crew vs. 7 Nashville SC (SUN 11/29, 8:00pm ET)
1 Sporting Kansas City vs. 4 Minnesota United (WED 12/2, 9:00pm ET)
2 Seattle Sounders vs. 6 FC Dallas (TUE 12/1, 9:30pm ET)
September 19, 2020: Columbus Crew 2, Nashville SC 0 (MAPFRE Stadium)