Categorized | Match Reports

Columbus’ fireworks outshine the Fire

Posted on 09 July 2010 by jzidar

On July 3rd, 2010 Commander-in-Chief Robert Warzycha led the Columbus Crew across the mighty Olentangy to face the vile ‘red coats’ on the field of battle in an attempt to liberate Columbus from the clutches of evil king Garber…  Ok, so maybe it didn’t go down exactly like that but the Crew did face off against red clad opponents on the eve of Independence Day.  The Chicago Fire came to Columbus and the Crew were out for blood, despite the match being their third in eight days.

Columbus

—————-Hesmer————-

–Hejduk-Marshall-Iro-Padula–

—————Carroll—————

–Gaven—–Moffat—–Rogers–

——–Schelotto–Garey———

Bench: Gruenebaum; Brunner, O’Rourke(Hejduk 70′), Francis; Ekpo; Lenhart(Schelotto 90′), Renteria(Garey 67′)

Chicago

—————Dykstra————-

-Robinson-Brown–Conde-Krol-

-Pappa–Banner-Pause-Husidic-

———Nyarko–McBride——–

Bench: Johnson; Umanzor, Watson-Siriboe(Robinson 84′); Bone, Kinney; Lowry, Dimitrov(McBride 86′)

A crowd of 14,017 expected 4th of July celebrations upon the conclusion of the match but were treated to fireworks at the end of both halves.  In a span of four minutes Columbus took the lead, then gave it back, then took it again.

Jason Garey almost opened the scoring in the 25th minute.  Chad Marshall sent the ball forward to Garey who flicked the ball on to Guillermo Barros Schelotto before taking off up field. Schelotto brought the ball down, stalled for a moment and then slid the ball through the Fire defense and into the path of the on rushing Garey.  Garey made his first touch a low driven shot to the near post. The ball beat Dykstra, who was left laying at the top of the six yard box, before pinging off the post and out of bounds for a goal kick.

In the 43 minute Schelotto and Garey linked up yet again.  Schelotto received the ball 20 yards out with his back to goal.  He turned and again was able to sneak a pas through the Fire defense to Garey as he raced into the box. Garey and Dykstra reached the ball simultaneously.  The Fire keeper attempted to smother the ball but Garey got enough of a touch on it to knock it from Dykstra’s grasp.  A trailing Adam Moffat came racing in, collected the ball and knocked it into the wide open net to put Columbus up by one.

Before the crowd had even stopped celebrating tragedy struck.  A Chicago Fire cross came flying in from along the right touchline towards the back post.  Patrick Nyarko had been an annoyance the entire half and this instance was no different.  As the ball sailed towards the back post Nyarko was in dead sprint to meet it but Frankie Hejduk kept with him step for step.  Hejduk’s form may have begun to drop off with his age but one thing that hasn’t changed is his ability to maintain a breakneck speed throughout the entirety of a 90 minute match. His speed kept him with Nyarko but his form failed him. As the ball came in Hejduk had prime positioning in front of Nyarko but instead of calmly knocking the ball over the crossbar like he has a million times Hejduk misjudged the flight of the ball and ended up sending a curling header past Hesmer and into his own net.

The match was level with only a minute plus stoppage left to play in the first half.  It looked as if the two teams would be heading into the dressing rooms on equal footing and then the Crew struck again.  Schelotto received the ball along the left side and played the ball forward to Gaven. Gaven dribbled toward the box, lifted his head and spotted Garey racing into the penalty area.  Gaven sent in a perfect looping cross right into the path of Garey who only had to redirect the ball into the net. It was a world class goal that no written description can truly do justice to, so here is a link to the highlight!

The win was the Crew’s second in league play and third overall since returning from the World Cup break.  The loss snapped a four game unbeaten streak for the Fire.  Columbus goes on the road this Saturday to face off against the Houston Dynamo.

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