The countdown of the 15 most memorable moments in Crew Stadium history based on voting from the Massive Report staff continues. Join the discussion on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #MRStadium.
It happened not once, not twice, not three times but four times. Historic Crew Stadium will always be remembered as the place the Americans beat Mexico. The fourth match between the United States Men’s National Team and Mexico in Columbus on Sep. 10, 2013, was the completion of three words soccer fans in America associate with historic Crew Stadium forever: Dos a Cero (2-0).
Nearly 25,000 fans filled out Crew Stadium in red, white and blue for what was set up to be a memorable night in Columbus. The Americans had just lost to Costa Rica four days prior and really needed a win against their arch-rivals Mexico. El Tri didn’t have a great game before either, falling at home to Honduras 2-0. Both teams came in needing redemption.
It should be noted that 2013 was the 100th anniversary of U.S. Soccer and the Americans marked that occasion all year wearing a special 100th anniversary kit. The white shirt was accompanied by the original U.S. soccer badge as the teams stepped out of the tunnel on a crisp fall evening. Manager Jurgen Klinsmann’s starting 11 was highlighted by Clint Dempsey, Landon Donovan and Tim Howard while Mexico’s lineup was led by Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and Giovani Dos Santos.
The match started and as was this case in the last three iterations of CONCACAF’s greatest rivalry in Columbus, the atmosphere was electric. The fans were entertained with an even first 45 minutes as both the Stars & Stripes and El Tri had multiple opportunities but to no avail. It was 0-0 at the half and the threat of no 2-0 win of the U.S. crept in.
Alas, it’s called “Dos A Cero” for a reason.
Four minutes into the second half, the United States won a corner kick. Donovan stepped up to send the curling cross in front of the American Outlaws in the north end and the cross was met by the head of Eddie Johnson who leaped and smashed the ball into the net for the 1-0 American lead. The crowd went wild as another step was taken towards a win and qualification to the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
But it's the U.S.-Mexico in Columbus, so of course, the game didn’t end there. Thirty minutes later, midfielder Mix Diskerud nicely juggled his way towards the byline and sent a surging ball across the six-yard box. Donovan slid towards the goal to poke the ball into the net to make it 2-0 and ESPN commentator Ian Darke put it simply: “It’s that scoreline again. Columbus. 2-0. USA over Mexico!”
The chain of 2-0 wins was nearly “ruined” by the boot of Clint Dempsey, who stepped up to take a penalty in the last second of the match. Dempsey sent his penalty wide right and the final whistle blew as lightning struck for a fourth time at Crew Stadium as the United States beat Mexico. Later that evening, Klinsmann and his squad found out Honduras drew Panama, meaning the U.S. qualified for the 2014 World Cup.
In Brazil, the Americans made it out of the group stage with a win against Ghana and a draw against Portugal. The Americans lost to Belgium in the Round of 16 in extra time in what is the last U.S. Men’s World Cup match.
The mantra of that team was,“I believe that we will win!” They did and the landmark win in qualifying was once again in Columbus, Ohio at historic Crew Stadium. In 2009, “Dos A Cero” became U.S. soccer lore. In 2013, it became the definition of a match at a stadium in the capital of the Buckeye State.
Read Massive Report’s previous Crew Stadium Moments