The 2022 MLS SuperDraft is here. Tuesday marks the day when collegiate talent is chosen by teams throughout Major League Soccer to hopefully be added to their rosters for the upcoming season.
Once the primary mechanism for adding players, the SuperDraft has taken more of a backseat role of importance within the league in recent years, especially when compared to how vital similar drafts are to teams in other American sports. Over the years, MLS teams developed their own academies and pipelines to professional soccer, in addition to the ability to acquire players from other leagues.
But that doesn’t mean the SuperDraft hasn’t produced quality players and will again. Additionally in 2022 comes with the added dimension of the MLS Next Pro league.
While the Columbus Crew would still like to add first-team level talent, the staff won’t just look for players that can have an immediate need on the senior team. Instead, they can also take chances on players to develop in the future for Crew 2.
The 2022 MLS SuperDraft consists of three rounds of picks. The Black & Gold hold three selections: the No. 12t, No. 40 and No. 68 overall picks. Expansion team Charlotte FC picks first in this year’s draft.
Here’s how you can follow along with the 2022 MLS SuperDraft.
How to Watch
Date: Tuesday, Janu 11, 2022,
Time: Pre-draft show: 2:30 p.m. ET. SuperDraft begins at 3 p.m. ET
Columbus’ MLS SuperDraft history
The Black & Gold’s status as an original MLS team of course brings a rich history of MLS draft success. Names deep in the hearts of Crew supporters got their start with the team via the MLS SuperDraft. Players from the past like Brian McBride, Jeff Cunningham, Chad Marshall and Edson Buddle alongside players still in the league such as Lalas Abubakar, Ethan Finlay and Justin Meram all initially came to Columbus from the SuperDraft.
In recent history, forward Miguel Berry is the Black & Gold draft pick that made the biggest impact. After spending 2020 on loan in the USL, Berry started for the Crew nine times in 2021. In his 18 overall appearances, Berry scored eight goals and registered two assists. His tenacity late in games saved Columbus on multiple occasions and kept the Black & Gold in the 2021 MLS Cup playoffs hunt until the last day of the season.
Then again there are drafts like 2021’s edition, where the Crew drafted Clemson University star Justin Malou, who never signed with the club.
Supporters hope for a Berry-esque on-field impact with Columbus’ 2022 MLS SuperDraft. Here’s how the last 10 years have looked for Crew first-round selections.
Find the full list of who the Crew can select here.
Recent Crew First Round Picks
2021 – Justin Malou
2020 – Miguel Berry
2019 – J.J. Williams
2018 – Ben Lundgaard
2017 – Lalas Abubakar & Niko Hansen
2016 – Rodrigo Saravia
2015 – Sergio Campbell
2014 – Ben Sweat
2013 – Ryan Finley
2012 – Ethan Finlay
The Crew begins training camp on Sunday, Jan. 16, when players report to Columbus for performance tests. The season begins Feb. 26, when the Black & Gold welcome Western Conference foes the Vancouver Whitecaps to Lower.com Field.