The Columbus Crew hopes to win a second straight MLS Cup championship in 2021 and a third overall in the team’s history. The Black & Gold now knows what it will take to return to the MLS Cup playoffs.
On Wednesday, Major League Soccer announced its schedule for the upcoming 2021 season, including all games for the defending champions. Scroll to the bottom to see the full 2021 Crew schedule.
Fans already knew the Crew will open the new MLS year at home against last year’s Supporters’ Shield winners, the Philadelphia Union, on Sunday, April 18 as the league announced all home openers for teams earlier this month. That game will air on FOX Sports 1 at 5:30 p.m. EST.
This year’s Crew schedule will feature a predominantly Eastern Conference feel. The Black & Gold will play home and away against every team in the East, while playing three games (either two home and one away or two away and one home) against six Eastern Conference foes. The Black & Gold will play the Chicago Fire, D.C. United, the New England Revolution, New York City FC, the New York Red Bulls and the Union three times each. Atlanta United, CF Montreal, FC Cincinnati, Inter Miami, Nashville SC, Orlando City SC and Toronto FC will each play home and away against the Crew.
The only two teams from the Western Conference Columbus will face are the Seattle Sounders (Aug. 21) and Austin FC (June 27) in two games that will likely be circled on fans’ calendars. The Black & Gold defeated the Sounders 3-0 in the MLS Cup Final last December, setting up a midseason championship rematch. Austin is owned by former Crew investor/operator Anthony Precourt, who attempted to move the Black & Gold from Columbus.
There will be four total MLS home games at historic Crew Stadium before the club opens its new downtown stadium on July 3. Following the season opener against Philadelphia, the Black & Gold will host D.C. United on Saturday May 8, Toronto FC on Saturday. May 29 and the Chicago Fire on Saturday, June 19 to say goodbye to the stadium its called home for 22 seasons.
As mentioned, the Crew will open the new Crew Stadium on July 3. MLS seems to have a sense of history as the New England Revolution will travel to Columbus to open the new stadium. The Revolution were the team that opened historic Crew Stadium, the first professional soccer specific stadium in the United States, on May 15, 1999, a 2-0 win for the home side.
Other important games to note are the two Hell is Real Derby matches against Cincinnati. Columbus will travel two hours south on Interstate-71 on Wednesday, July 7 for the team’s first game at West End Stadium. FC Cincy will play its first game in the Crew’s new stomping grounds on Friday, Aug. 27. The Black & Gold will also play their first-ever game against Inter Miami after not seeing the 2020 expansion club last year due to the altered scheduled. Columbus goes to Miami on Saturday. Sept. 11 before the return trip against Inter in New Crew Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 16. The Crew will close out the 2021 MLS regular season at home on Decision Day against the Chicago Fire.
In addition to the season opener, the Black & Gold will be on national television six more times in 2021. Columbus’ Sunday, May 16 trip to the Revolution will be on ESPN2, followed by the trip to Austin on June 27 on FOX Sports 1 and the home opener against New England on July 3. The Crew will play at Atlanta on ABC on Saturday, July 24 and the team’s MLS Cup rematch will be on FOX on Aug. 21 followed by the game against Cincinnati the following weekend on ESPN.
2021 Columbus Crew schedule
|April, 18||Philadelphia Union||FOX Sports 1||5:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, May 1||at CF Montreal||Bally Sports Ohio||3 p.m.|
|Saturday, May 8||D.C. United||Bally Sports Ohio||1:30 p.m.|
|Wednesday, May 12||at Toronto FC||Bally Sports Ohio||7 p.m.|
|Sunday, May 16||at New England Revolution||ESPN2||6 p.m.|
|Saturday, May 22||at New York City FC||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, May 29||Toronto FC||Bally Sports Ohio||3 p.m|
|Saturday, June 19||Chicago Fire||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Wednesday, June 23||at Philadelphia Union||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, June 27||at Austin FC||FOX Sports 1||8 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 3||New England Revolution||ESPN||5 p.m.|
|Wednesday, July 7||at FC Cincinnati||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 17||New York City FC||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Wednesday, July 21||Nashville SC||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 24||at Atlanta United||ABC||3:30 p.m.|
|Friday, July 30||at New York City FC||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Wednesday, Aug. 4||D.C. United||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Aug. 7||Atlanta United||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Aug. 14||at Chicago Fire||Bally Sports Ohio||8 p.m.|
|Wednesday, Aug. 18||at New York Red Bulls||Bally Sports Ohio||TBA|
|Saturday, Aug. 21||Seattle Sounders||FOX||5:30 p.m.|
|Friday, Aug. 27||FC Cincinnati||ESPN||6:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Sep. 4||at Orlando City SC||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Sep 11||at Inter Miami||Bally Sports Ohio||TBA|
|Tuesday, Sep. 14||New York Red Bulls||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Sep. 18||at New England Revolution||Bally Sports Ohio||7 p.m.|
|Saturday, Sep. 25||CF Montreal||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Oct. 2||at Philadelphia Union||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Oct. 16||Inter Miami||Bally Sports Ohio||6 p.m.|
|Wednesday, Oct. 20||at Nashville SC||Bally Sports Ohio||8:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Oct. 23||New York Red Bulls||Bally Sports Ohio||6 p.m.|
|Wednesday, Oct. 27||Orlando City SC||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, Oct. 30||at D.C. United||Bally Sports Ohio||7:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, Nov. 7||Chicago Fire||Bally Sports Ohio||3:30 p.m.|