Glauber's first goal shows potential of South American connection

Brazilian defender tallies first MLS goal in home opener

COLUMBUS, Ohio — During the preseason, new Columbus Crew Brazilian defender Glauber exhibited a strong aerial presence on set pieces delivered in by Argentine forward Federico Higuain.

The South American connection clicked again Saturday in the home opener, but this time instead of going up for the cross, Glauber went low for a diving header that briefly gave the Crew (1-1-1) the lead in the 68th minute against the San Jose Earthquakes. The match eventually finished 1-1.

The 6-foot-4 Glauber made a run toward the near post and the seas parted for a clear path to the goal. Higuain laced a service from the right corner that Glauber drilled past goalkeeper Jon Busch from 6 yards for his first MLS goal in his third game.

"Higuain has a good corner," Glauber said. "I had space to run. Higuain put the ball in the correct space. I made the correct run. I feel really happy because when I score a goal it helps the team."

The restart was set up by the diligent work of second-year midfielder Ethan Finlay, who made his first appearance of the season subbing for Dominic Oduro on the right side in the 63rd minute. For Finlay, it was a chance to release some pent up frustration for not playing in the win at Chivas USA and last week's' loss at Vancouver.

"It's tough," he said. "It makes the competition throughout the week, preparing for each game, that much more important."

He made the most of his opportunity by chasing down an Higuain pass in the right corner and forcing the ball to be knocked out of bound.

"I thought maybe I should have shot it first," Finlay said. "Their guy was sliding. He made a nice defensive play and we got the corner."

Then it was left to Glauber to thrill the home fans for the first time, at least until Justin Morrow tied the match in the 73rd minute.

"Any time you can score an important goal in front of your fans and celebrate with them that's all you can ask for," goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum said of Glauber. "Those are the moments you'll remember. I wish we could have made it stand."