A BIT OF REVENGE AT STAKE ...
The Crew needed two positive results last weekend to stay afloat in the run for the MLS Cup Playoffs and unfortunately were eliminated from postseason contention ... the Crew fell 3-2 to the Revs on Saturday night and then Chicago defeated Toronto just after the final whistle in the Crew match ... even with a Crew win at New England, the Black & Gold would have been eliminated ... however, the loss to the Revs leaves the Crew with a feeling that New England kept the Crew from the postseason, giving plenty of motivation this weekend to return the favor.
DESPITE TWO LOSSES THIS YEAR, BLACK & GOLD HAVE REVS’ NUMBER ...
Sunday’s meeting will be the 60th regular-season meeting between the two teams, the Crew’s most-faced opponent during the season since 1996 ... the Crew’s 29 wins (29-19-11) against the Revs are the most versus any opponent in Black & Gold history, more than D.C. United (23 wins against), New York (24 wins against) or Sporting KC (21 wins).
... AND A STRONG STRETCH AGAINST THE REVS HAS HELPED
Although the Revs have won the regular-season series in 2013 with a pair of wins on July 20 and October 19, the Black & Gold have found success against the Revs over the last six seasons ... in the last 17 meetings, dating back to 2007, the Crew is 8-5-4 against the Revs ... during that stretch, the Crew has won the regular-season series four times and the two teams have split results two other times ... from 1996 through 2000, and again from 2002 through 2006, the two conference foes met four times a year.
Halloween is just around the corner, and that can mean only one thing: It’s time for MLS jack-o’-lanterns.
MLSsoccer.com is running its third annual MLS Pumpkin Carving Contest from Thursday, October 24 - Wednesday, October 30. One person's pumpkin carving will be selected based on style, creativity, originality, and its connection to MLS ie: club logos, players etc. The winner will receive one MLS jersey of his/her choice* from MLSGear.com, and the photo of their pumpkin will be featured on MLSsoccer.com on Halloween.
We want your best MLS-themed designs, so let your creative inner flame burn as brightly as your pumpkin's. Get it?
Here's how to enter:
- Take a picture of of your carved, MLS-themed pumpkin.
- Post the photo on Twitter/Instagram using the hashtag #MLSPumpkin.
- Finally, tell us why you chose the club, player, coach, etc. you carved into your pumpkin.
The winner will be notified on Wednesday, October 30 via direct message on Twitter, or in the comment section of your photo on Instagram.
Some inspiration from previous contests: Past Winners
Click here for full contest rules, and then sumbit your #MLSPumpkin today!
Crew players Justin Meram, Shawn Sloan and Eric Gehrig joined Frankie Hejduk on Monday to take over Fairbrook Elementary School during the annual “Crew Takes Over Your School” event. The players spent the afternoon assisting the children during lunch, participating in various activities during recess and teaching the children about the importance of staying active both mentally and physically through their Active Bodies, Active Minds assembly. Fairbrook Elementary was chosen as a result of their high participation in the Crew’s Educator Appreciation Night on June 15 which brought out more than 2,000 total educators through the Ohio Education Association.
For his left-footed beauty against the New England Revolution, Crew forward Aaron Schoenfeld has been nominated for AT&T Goal of the Week on MLSSoccer.com. The second-year striker was a driving force in the Black & Gold attack in the 3-2 loss, providing his first career goal and an assist as a halftime substitute.
Schoenfeld faces stiff competition this week from Gaby Torres' winner in Colorado and Tim Cahill's fastest goal in MLS history, so be sure to vote early and often.
Following his team-leading 13th goal of the season on Saturday, Crew forward Dominic Oduro has been nominated by MLSSoccer.com as a Top 3 Performer for Week 34. The Ghanaian speedster registered a goal and an assist in the weekend's 3-2 loss to the New England Revolution after being named MLS Player of the Month for September.
Due to a nagging hip injury suffered in the Crew's 1-0 loss to Sporting Kansas City on October 5, Federico Higuaín will miss Saturday night's Eastern Conference clash against the New England Revolution. Though the Argentine playmaker began jogging once again during the week, Interim Head Coach Brian Bliss and the team's medical staff ruled Higuaín was not fit for game action.
Ethan Finlay will replace Higuaín in the lineup as Dominic Oduro will join Jairo Arrieta on the Crew frontline.
"We said it yesterday that the decision regarding Federico traveling would be a flight-time call," Bliss explained. "After consulting with Federico and the medical staff, we determined that he would be unable to go tonight and so it made sense that he would not travel with us yesterday."
Following the Montreal Impact's 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Union, the Crew needs a win in New England tonight coupled with a Toronto FC win or draw against the Chicago Fire. Higuaín will be re-evaluated and could return with a berth a chance to clinch an MLS Cup Playoff berth next week against the Revolution in Columbus.
"We'll re-evaluate his availability next week, but for now, we believe we have what it takes to get three crucial points tonight," Bliss said.
With starts at right wing in the last four matches, Dominic Oduro now has started 17 matches in 2013 lined up on the right, while also posting 15 starts at forward. Oduro’s team-leading 12 goals have been fairly balanced, with seven goals in 15 starts at forward and five goals in 17 games at right midfield. The Crew is 5-7-3 in 2013 when Oduro starts at forward and is 7-8-2 when Oduro takes the field on the right side of the Crew’s midfield.
Making starts in the central midfield in the last four matches, Tony Tchani now has 20 appearances, including 11 starts, for the Crew in 2013. The 24-year-old began his career with New York in 2010 and made 27 appearances (17 starts) for a career-high in both categories. Over the last two seasons with the Black & Gold, Tchani has recorded 44 appearances and 25 starts.
With the Crew on a bye weekend last weekend (October 11-13), midfielder/defender Kevan George departed for international duty with Trinidad & Tobago. George earned his third career cap in the 0-0 draw on Tuesday night, making a substitute appearance in the 83rd minute. Earlier this season, George earned a call-up during the OSN Cup, an international tournament held in Saudi Arabia from September 5-9. During the tournament, George made two substitute appearances to earn his first two caps on the senior roster, appearing as a substitute in the match against the United Arab Emirates on September 5 and against Saudi Arabia on September 9.
Crew players Bernardo Anor, Federico Higuain, Jairo Arrieta, Matias Sanchez and Augustin Viana made a special delivery to the Mid-Ohio Foodbank this week in conjunction with the Crew’s ¡Viva el Fútbol! celebration presented by Lifeline of Ohio for Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15- October 15).
At four different Crew home match dates throughout the 2013 season, fans were encouraged to bring canned food items to the Crew Stadium gates as part of the Crew and Sodexo Fight Hunger Food Drive. As a result of this drive, the two organizations were able to donate over 6,000 pounds of canned food which is enough to feed roughly 2,000 families.
(Photos courtesy of Kevin Cross / International Soccer Network)