Monday, the Columbus Crew announced the re-signing of MLS veteran and backup goalkeeper Evan Bush. He returns with on a one-year deal, with an option for 2023. With Bush’s return to the Black & Gold, Columbus retains a solidified goalkeeper tandem for the 2022 season. It was a hole the Crew front office strived to fill.
“Evan is a consummate professional and continues to foster competition and provide depth to our goalkeeper corps,” said Crew President and General Manager Tim Bezbatchenko. “He has stepped in admirably when called upon, including helping us lift the Campeones Cup last fall, and we’re pleased that he will be returning to the Club this season.”
Bush played a small number of matches in 2021, but was ready when called upon, and came up big. Columbus played five matches for the Crew, winning two, losing one and secured one draw. The biggest moment came on September 29, against Cruz Azul in the Campeones Cup.
Against the champions of Mexico’s Liga MX, Bush played all 90 minutes for an injured Eloy Room. In the match, Bush registered five saves in the 2-0 victory. That performance gave Columbus their lone trophy of 2021, and the first intercontinental title in Columbus’ 26-year history.
That victory was Bush’s second clean sheet of the season, which is made even more impressive considering the inconsistency in playing time as a backup to Room. Those performances are part of a stellar MLS career where Bush registered 42 total shutouts and 600 saves in 188 MLS Regular Season matches.
Bush is an Ohio-native, hailing from Concord, Ohio. Concord is a town Northwest of Cleveland, on Lake Erie.
Prior to coming to Columbus, Bush spent his MLS career in Canada. After 2020 saw Bush play a similar backup role with the Vancouver Whitecaps, Columbus traded for him on December 14, 2020, two days after hoisting the MLS Cup. Prior to Vancouver, Bush was part of Montreal’s move from the now defunct NASL to MLS. Bush spent six years as the primary goalkeeper for the Montreal Impact.
After the 2021 season, Columbus initially parted ways with Bush and Eric Dick, leaving just Room on the roster. Bush re-signing with the club is good news for not only the goalkeeping core but filling out the overall roster.
Bush’s signing comes six days before Crew players report to the OhioHealth Performance Center at Historic Crew Stadium. After two days of testing, the Crew head to Florida, for a 10-day camp in Fort Lauderdale. Following their trip to Florida, the Black & Gold prepare for the season back in Columbus from February 1 through 6, before ending their preseason on February 19 in Charleston, South Carolina.
Columbus opens the season against Bush’s last Canadian stop, the Vancouver Whitecaps, at Lower.com Field on February 26.