MLSSoccer.com's Dan Haiek and Armchair Analyst Matt Doyle preview the Friday night match between the Colorado Rapids and Columbus Crew. Will Dillon Powers and Vicente Sanchez be too much for Columbus to handle? How much does Wil Trapp mean to the Columbus midfield?
In partnership with the Columbus Council on World Affairs, the Crew Soccer Foundation coordinated a youth forum titled “The World of Soccer is MASSIVE” on June 20 for 50 high-school-aged youth. The event celebrated this year’s FIFA World Cup and gave participating children a behind-the-scenes look at Crew Stadium, helped the youth explore “global jobs in sports” and work in groups to consider the social, political and cultural dimensions of soccer.
The Crew -- and goalkeeper Steve Clark -- allowed just one goal in regular-season MLS action in the month of June. Following the 1-1 draw against Real Salt Lake on June 4, the Crew has held its opponents scoreless for two consecutive matches entering July.
Columbus is 2-5-3 all-time on Independence Day. The last 4th of July win for the Black & Gold was back in 2001 against LA in the Rose Bowl before a crowd of 52,634.
The deadline to vote for eight Crew players are eligible for selection for the 2014 MLS All-Star Game is approaching (July 11). Crew players eligible include: Bernardo Anor, Jairo Arrieta, Steve Clark, Giancarlo Gonzalez, Federico Higuain, Michael Parkhurst, Wil Trapp and Josh Williams ... fans can vote online at MLSsoccer.com for their Fan XI until July 11, selecting one goalkeeper and 10 field players from the ballot ... fans can also utilize the AT&T / EA SPORTS “More than a Vote” Challenge and vote for a favorite forward by scoring goals with them in EA SPORTS FIFA 14 with one goal equaling one vote ... the All-Star Fan XI is set to be revealed during the ESPN2 broadcast of Philadelphia Union vs. New York Red Bulls on July 16 at 7:00 p.m. ET ... the gameday roster, chosen by All-Star head coach Caleb Porter, is set to be announced at a later date.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, AMERICA
The Black & Gold will play their 11th Fourth of July contest in club history when they take on the Rapids ... this is the second consecutive year with an Independence Day showdown ... prior to 2013, the Crew had not played on the Fourth since 2009.
OTHER INDEPENDENCE DAY SHOWDOWNS
After a tough 2-1 loss last year on July 4 at LA, the Crew looks to continue its recent stretch of securing points on Independence Day ... the Crew has earned a point in three of the last four meetings, including a three-match unbeaten streak (0-0-3) on Independence Day that began in 2006 (1-1 at Houston) and continued in 2007 (0-0 at Colorado) before the 1-1 draw at RFK Stadium five seasons ago.
LAST FOURTH IN COLORADO
The Crew played Colorado on Independence Day in 2007 and played to a 0-0 draw ... it was the first July 4th contest at the new Dick’s Sporting Goods Park and it was the first scoreless League match at the venue according to ColoradoRapids.com ... in 1999, the Crew played on July 4th in Colorado before another huge crowd (51,025), winning 3-0.
In partnership with Make-A-Wish® Ohio, Kentucky & Indiana, players Chad Barson, Fifi Baiden, Adam Bedell, Eric Gehrig, Ben Speas and Hector Jimenez were joined by wish kids for an afternoon of bowling at Star Lanes Polaris. Eleven wish kids and their families were treated to a VIP experience, complete with private lanes, Crew gift bags, endless pizza and soft drinks. Even Crew Cat got involved in the competitive games.
Make-A-Wish® Ohio, Kentucky & Indiana has granted nearly 13,000 wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions throughout the tri-state area.
The Dayton Dutch Lions earned a 1-0 victory on the road against the Pittsburgh Riverhounds at Highmark Stadium on Saturday, June 28.
Eli Garner scored the match's only goal, which occurred in the 18th minute.
The match featured another heavy dose of Crew influence. Loanees Matt Walker, Ross Friedman, Matt Wiet and Aaron Schoenfeld all started for Dayton. Schoenfeld and Friedman each notched one shot in the contest.
Photo Credit: Jeremi Blurton