That Crew Religion

The Crew brings together a diverse group of people who celebrate and support, you might even say worship together.

Does Crew SC Got Talent?

Which Crew SC player would be best at karaoke?

Welcome to Crewture.

Which stands for Crew and Culture, and follows Crew supporter culture. Created around the Nordecke creation and used to follow the rise of the new supporters section which is now 9 years old.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

5/31/09: Crew Fans Hit Seattle From All Over

Matt from Indianapolis:



Other Crew fans hitting will call in this video at the 48 second mark and Crew fans getting friendly and verbally berated back to their stands at 1:28 and at 2:23. Crew goal at 3:24, great to feel the collective sadness:

(Video by: previouslytaped-Club 234)

Part of Crew Nation? Got your own pictures or videos from Saturday? Send them here, crewfighter@live.com

5/31/09: Enjoyable Viewing

So our main rivals really sucked today and yesterday. Toronto FC get destroyed 3-0 by Houston:


And, in some poetic justice, Chicago Fire self destructs vs. last place FC Dallas 3-0 as well. I guess the soccer gods have had enough of McBride and Blanco's pathetic diving to win tactics:




4 point week and our rivals sucking it up, brillant.

5/31/09: A Good Crew Tie


Columbus starting to find their stride and confidence is starting to build in the fans that the Crew will be up top the standings by the end of the year. Heck maybe by July. (Pic by: Getty Images)

The Columbus Crew had five players out, playing on turf in front of 30,000 opposing fans, without their best player for the first 69 minutes. However, the gamble to rest Schelotto, to go with the other players out, paid off as Noonan made an impact with a beautiful cross in the 12th minute right to Moreno's head for an early 1-0 lead. Crickets cherped at the plastic Qwest Field.

The Crew looked like the better team for most of the game and were unlucky most of the first half to not score again on good opportunties from Emmanuel Ekpo and others. Seattle would get their bearings nevertheless around the 25th minute and started to get a few opportunities that led to a penalty kick in the 32nd minute for Freddie Ljungberg. Everyone where I was standing, at a packed Ruby's basement just after 11 at night, jaws dropped when a penalty was called. "Here we go again, blowing another lead. Too good to be true."

Next thing we knew Freddie Ljungberg, the superstar, whithers under the pressure of facing Andy "The Hebrew Hammer" Greunebaum and doesn't even place the penalty kick on frame. Celebration ensued at Ruby's, it had to be the Crew's night.



After the missed PK, the Crew faced onslaught after onslaught, while making their own chances, until a fortutious ball was lofted by Ljungberg over the Crew defense to Nate Jaqua who fired it home in the 58th minute.

The two teams would battle for the next 35 minutes, with no team looking capable of breaking the deadlock. In the 73rd minute Schelotto was cautioned for a back pass to Andy Greunebaum, which led to a dangerous indirect free kick six yards in the box. Superstar Freddie Ljungberg was off again, and at that point escaping with a point didn't sound that bad at all.

Some Quick Thoughts:
**Danny O'Rourke redeemed himself with a strong performance. O'Rourke was everywhere in the midfield and shut down opposition such as Brad Evans and Freddy Montero. When you mess up you get criticized against LA, when you play an excellent game against Seattle you get praise. O'Rourke deserves praise for filling in(and then some) admirably for Carroll.

I like him there with Brunner and Marshall in central defense until Carroll is healthy again.

**Brunner does not play like a rookie, just as solid as Marshall. I thought the defense did well handling the pressure, even Zayner played well and I didn't think exactly deserved the penalty kick call against Ljungberg. I feel that was your typical superstar call(be it Blanco, Beckham, or Ljungberg) we have seen it again and again.

**Gaven, Rogers, and Ekpo had some opportunities, but we need much more out of them opportunities wise. Also, Ekpo needs to hold onto possession more. This was one of those games where sometimes he looked amazing, and sometimes he didn't. If he could have finished his big opportunity on Keller, Ekpo would be receiving a better grade. Had a much better match on Wednesday.

Rogers looks more like himself though, the blistering shot three minutes in made me figure Rogers would get some more opportunities later. Didn't happen though.

**Noonan should receive more opportunities.

**Warzycha coached a good game.

Overall, a good week gaining the three points at home and getting the tie on the road. I think the Crew has a very winnable next three weeks with Kansas City away(already beat them 3-2 in Columbus), then Chivas at home(a team I think is a bit lucky and overrated, a team I think Columbus can take at home), then a lackluster FC Dallas team away. I think 7 points wouldn't be shocking.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

5/30/09: Crew vs. Seattle Preview

The Columbus Crew seem to be back on track going undefeated in their last six games with a (2-0-4) record. The Seattle Sounders have been stalling a little bit, getting a little draw malady as well, with four straight draws. The Columbus Crew could really benefit, no scratch that, need to get some consecutive wins strung together. Seattle could use a win as well to get back on track. In their last outing, Freddy Montero was the man of the match for Starbucks United with a goal and assist as Seattle went on to a 2-2 comeback tie on the road.



As an aside, congrats to Freddy Montero for his other success as he recently opened a new clothing line.



I hear it's for the trendy casual stalker.

Anyways, back to the game.

The Crew could really use a win and will have to shuffle the lineup with Carroll out for at least two weeks. Also, not making the trip are Moffat, Iro, Hesmer, and captain Frankie Hejduk. Hejduk seems as if he may play one game this year for the Crew and may end up playing more for the national team this summer. No player has played more for their national team then with their club team for the Crew since Panamian legend and cult hero Luis Gallardo.

Legendary Panamian footballers aside, the Crew could really use a win. However, Warzycha slipped up and did a whoopsy in a post San Jose interview, which has to make Crew fans wonder if the Crew is lacking that killer instinct in Seattle? From Shawn Mitchell's blog post "Notebook dump":

Robert Warzycha never hopes for a tie, but a slip of the tongue after Wednesday's game indicated he'd be content with a draw at Seattle on Saturday.

"Hopefully we can get a point over there," he said, wrapping up his assessment of the Sounders.


An ever engrossing, rip roaringly, entertaining assessment at that. As a side story, I wonder if Warzycha is up at 7 a.m. on the West Coast watching Everton vs. Chelsea. If he is, hopefully he gets in an afternoon nap.

Back to the comment, that I sort of have (surprise) a problem with.

Why would the Crew ever be content with a tie? Especially, with the Crew's horrid start to this season? We need points Robert. Not ties, no more ties, we have enough ties to last a season(we had six last year and we have six this year). We need wins.

If Chicago can waltz into Chivas and steal three points. There is no reason why the Crew can't do the same in Seattle. Moreno and Gaven like to fall down alot anyways, pull a McBride.

I think Robert's main problem compared to Sigi is a lack of confidence and a killer instinct. You got to go in with the attitude of "we are going to go in there and get the 3 points", even if you don't believe it. Hopefully, the praying for a tie by the coaching staff, hasn't rubbed off on the players.

You go in playing for the tie instead of the win, and you will lose.

The Crew need to go into Qwest Field, a place where Seattle is undefeated as well, and make a statement. Sure, it's nice to pick up some easier wins against San Jose or Kansas City. But, Columbus has not shown that they can beat anyone good this season. A big win in Seattle, in front of their 30,000 screaming fanboys shows that the Crew is back and everyone else better watch out.

You can also bet that if Warzycha pulls it off, that he will gain some new fanboys as well. The Warzycha bandwagon applications will run out multiple times around 12:30 a.m., that's for sure.

Marshall has the correct attitude though:

Chad Marshall didn't care that the Crew would face its old coach on Saturday.

"I'm not concerned about that," he said after Wednesday's game. "I'm more concerned about the Laker game right now than I am about Sigi Schmid and Seattle."


Schmid had some high praise for Columbus:
"There's a buzz in the city," Schmid said. "You see people waiting in bus stops wearing Sounders gear. It's not like Columbus, where maybe just the Nordecke is decked out. Everyone wears green."

Oh, I meant Seattle. Sigi could have just said, "man that city has crappy support except for the Nordecke." Yes, we all know, Seattle is great. Gosh, pat yourselves on the back some more. But, hey, Columbus used to be that way. I'm not sure if clubs like Seattle or Toronto can sustain the same support when it's no longer the new, hip thing in their city.

I bet one ends up around 14,000 a game. I'm hoping it's TFC.

Anyways, lineups... Crew will probably march out something like this with Carroll being replaced with O'Rourke or Oughton and Brunner staying in central defense. Or The Crew can start Oughton there and place O'Rourke back in central defense. Or Warzycha can do the random spurious youth thing, ala Grendi, and just throw Burns in there and see if he swims:


Seattle will probably do a little something like this. With Osvaldo Alonso probably out and Fredik Ljunburger back in, sorry I'm hungry:


The Result: Despite third grade gym teacher tactics with Warzycha looking for another tie, the Crew players want it more than Seattle's players, as they want to stick one to their former coach. Crew come into Seattle and shock the sound wave and the rest of the scarf wearing cappachino drinking fanboys with a 3-0 victory. Guillermo Barros Schelotto hat trick.

5/30/09: Live Internet Streaming Demand Way Up For This Game



I have seen a lot of websites up, like this one. Just take a click on the google blog page. About 3/4th's of the first page is live streams for this game.

Friday, May 29, 2009

5/29/09: Comments- Crew vs. Quakes, Crew vs. Seattle


The 300 pound polar bear in the room.

According to Craig Merz, Rookie defender Eric Brunner, who assisted Eddie Gaven and who the fans want to become Marshall's new partner in the middle of defense said on the San Jose game:
"That was the mentality I had and the whole defense had," he said. "We definitely didn't want to give up a late goal. I know 85 minutes in I looked at the clock and told Chad (Marshall), Jed (Zayner) and Gino (Padula), 'We're not giving anything up.'"

That's the attitude.

Andy G on Simon Elliot's MMA takedown on Brian Carroll:

"It looked pretty vicious from my angle," Crew goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum said. "It looked like he grabbed him and slammed him to the floor. It was like a MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) takedown."

Sigi says winning against friends is sweeter. All isn't that cuddily:
“I always have a saying that you always want to win when you play friends,” Schmid said Thursday. “If you’re playing somebody you don’t know, you only hear about it that day. If you’re playing friends, you hear about it for a long time. You always want to get the win when you’re playing friends because it gives you bragging rights for a little bit of time. So that’s what this is all about.”

Nobody can hate nobody's. Sounders fans actually think people hate them, sorry, unless you're Chicago, TFC, or DC you will get no real hatred this way. Have to earn your stripes.

According to USA Today, when he walked off the plane after Columbus won the MLS Cup title last year, Ezra Hendrickson immediately noticed the Crew fans who showed up at the airport with signs pleading for team management to keep Sigi Schmid as head coach.

"He's a loved man there," said Hendrickson, now one of Schmid's assistants in Seattle.

Not anymore. Sigi basically betrayed Columbus.

Robbie Rogers Wants To Take It To Sigi:
"I know Sigi was always trying to protect me from getting whacked and hacked and kicked but now he might tell his players to do the same thing. It's going to be real physical," he said. "There's going to be over 30,000 people there. All of us are really excited to go there and try to take three points. A win would be awesome. I'm definitely looking forward to going in there and trying to take it to Sigi."

Sigi not the be all end all, by any means:
"Sigi obviously came in and built something, but he didn't do it alone," Gruenebaum said. "He's a great coach but we're just as motivated if not more to play for Bobby."

Result: This means alot to the Crew players and coaching staff. This only means alot to Sigi Schmid, Ezra Hendrickson, and Brad Evans on the other side. The Crew as a result will win this and get some good form going finally.

5/29/09: Chicago Steals More Points On Phantom Calls

Remember the Padula red card(that wasn't) on Blanco. Where Blanco fell down and cried like he was hit by a sniper and then Blanco fanboy Marrufo just had to blow the whistle and give the red. Well, Chitown is at it again, cheating their way to the trophy and proud of it. McBride said on this call that he felt two hands on his back and decided to fall down. Well, McBride's cheating was awarded as Blanco took the PK, struck it, and then all the hunchback's fanboys went wild.



Sickening MLS. The refs are in Blanco and Chicago's little pocket. Wonder if McBride threw a jersey after the game to the ref.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

5/28/09: Paint The Hospital Yellow And Black



According to Shawn Mitchell, goalkeeper William Hesmer (back), midfielder Brian Carroll(shoulder), defender Frankie Hejduk(groin), midfielder Adam Moffat (left hamstring) and defender Andy Iro (left quadriceps) did not travel to Seattle.

But, with some better news, Brian Carroll will not be undergoing season ending surgery after all. Instead, Carroll will have shoulder surgery at the end of the year and will be out at least for the next two weeks. Carroll surprisingly could be back before the injury proned Adam Moffat, Moffat who suffered a more severe injury to a different part of his hamstring could be out for a while.

The Crew, in all probability, with Moreno and Oughton gone next weekend on national team duty, could have only 16 healthy starters against Kansas City.

5/28/09: Kansas City Away Hotel Rate



For anyone headed to Kansas City away and looking for an affordable rate at a nice hotel, I received the following message in my email this morning from a Kansas City hotel:

Crewture:

My name is Clint Keith and I am the sales manager for The Q Hotel + Spa in Kansas City. One of the owners of our hotel is also a part owner of The Kansas City Wizards, and he wants to extend a tremendous rate to fans that are coming in from out of town to watch their team. Our hotel was voted Best Hotel in Kansas City in October 2008, and usually our rooms run around $140/night. However, the rate we are offering to MLS fans from out of town is $99/night. This rate includes a free hot breakfast, free drinks during the welcome reception, free wi-fi, free parking, and free passes to Gold’s Gym accross the street.

The Q is located in the heart of the city in Historic Westport, home to dozens of shops, bars and restaurants. Kansas City’s #1 tourist attraction is the Country Club Plaza and it is 5 blocks to our South. Finally, the new Power & Light Entertainment district is located downtown, 3 miles from us but within our free shuttle area.

I encourage you to look over the information I have attached to this email, as well as our website: www.theqhotel.com. Please let me know if you have any interest.

Sincerely,

Clint Keith
Sales Manager
The Q Hotel + Spa
560 Westport Rd
Kansas City, MO 64111
Direct: (816) 986-0789
Email: qhotelsales@gmail.com

5/28/09: Brian Carroll Out Indefinitely After A MMA Takedown. Best Fit For A Long Term Replacement Would Be Moffat.



From Shawn Mitchell's post game blog:
The Crew suffered a big loss when Brian Carroll was injured in the second half. The midfield rock had played every minute of every game prior to suffering a badly dislocated shoulder after getting tangled up with Simon Elliott(I'll add the video of it shortly, through screen capture since MLS didn't put it in their quick kicks). Carroll came off in the 69th minute. He might have surgery on Thursday. He is out indefinitely.

"To lose BC in the middle of our field – he’s kind of the heart and soul of the team," Robbie Rogers said. "It’s going to be difficult."

Coach Robert Warzycha said he would rather have lost the game than have lost Carroll.

Elliott, who fell on top of Carroll after he appeared to sort of horse-collar Carroll in their weird entanglement, said he had no ill intent.

"It was certainly not malicious by any means," Elliott said. "I certainly didn't mean to do anything like that. I wish him all the best."


Micheal Arace talks about the no calls that led to Brian Carroll's injury.

The injury:


My thoughts: Brian Carroll is a crucial part to the Crew's successful lineup. No one that we currently have, other than Brian Carroll, can play that position like he can. Maybe... It's a big loss, but no reason to hit a panic button yet. You have Duncan Oughton(possibly lost a step) and Danny O'Rourke(wasn't too hot at DM before) who could possibly slot in. But, I don't think either can give us what Moffat can. Adam Moffat is likely to be back for Seattle who plays a very similar position to Carroll when Moffat is on the field. All you have to ask of Moffat is not to take as many offensive foray's, which I think Moffat can handle. Moffat's tenacity and toughness is a good fit for a defensive midfield position.

In a way the depth works out okay because with Moffat back before this injury. The Crew would have had to decide whether to keep their current midfield or bench Ekpo for Moffat.

My expected lineup from hereon in, or at least the one I want:
---------------Moreno--------------------
--------------Schelotto-------------------
Rogers----------Gaven--------------Ekpo
----------------Moffat--------------------
-Padula----Marshall-----Brunner--Hejduk
----------------Hesmer-------------------

No doubt it's going to be a tougher year without BC. Do the Crew focus a possible summer trade now on the defensive midfield position instead of the position everyone was worried about, striker? I think the Crew should try out Moffat and only Moffat there. I think Moffat is the only person capable of a Carroll-like effort. If it doesn't work as well, then they are going to have to make some sort of swap out of necessity.

If anything the loss of Carroll, makes it even less likely that you will see a striker move made. Because then the staff could be saying, "yes we could use a better finisher, but we could use someone like Carroll as well." However, who knows if there is anyone out there that will fit in as nicely as Carroll has.

5/28/09: Hey Ryan Johnson How Does Losing Taste?

Ryan Johnson made probably the biggest mistake, to show that the other teams fans actually got to him and affected his performance. He was a cocky little turd, however I wonder how cocky he feels now since his wonder goal(lol) wasn't enough to beat the Crew:


Enjoy last place in MLS turd burgular.

5/28/09: Crew vs. San Jose Photos

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

5/27/09: Another Extension? Coach Schelotto? Schelotto Loves Columbus & Columbus Says Right Back At You.


Picture: Guillermo Barros Schelotto, with one of his three young sons, walking outside the Nordecke during a game off last year, already looking like a natural in the sideline suit. (Picture by: Sam Fahmi)

Schelotto loves Columbus and wants to stay in Columbus for a while(read Dispatch article highlights below). The best game plan I can think of, is to sign Schelotto to an extension for next season as Schelotto obviously still has it and is the engine of the team. Every time Schelotto comes off late in a game, the Crew starts to fall apart and loses a lead. Then make Schelotto an assistant coach and then make him(or Frankie) the head coach after Warzycha's era, however long or short that happens to be. Schelotto is wildly popular among Crew fans and as long as he keeps working hard on his English lessons, I think Guille would make a great coach.

But, first things first. Let's hope for one more year after this with Schelotto as our DP. I believe that Schelotto said to the Crew, when he got the designated player deal at the end of last year, that if you want to extend that deal to 2010 as well, go right ahead.

Apparently age or a downturn in ability hasn't set in. If anything Schelotto is even better this year. So, go right ahead. Please!

From today's Columbus Dispatch Article From Shawn Mitchell entitled "Columbus feeling like home for Schelotto":

On Columbus:
"When I come here in 2007, I thought I'd play one year and go back. Now it's the third year. I love it here. The people, the life, the city. I want to stay here with my family."

According to Mitchell, Schelotto said he would like to go into coaching after he retires, perhaps at the end of this season or the next. He is not keen on returning to Argentina, where violence and crime are a part of the chaotic nature of the sport.

Moreno on Schelotto staying in Columbus:
"In Columbus his family is safe and it's easy to get used to the lack of traffic, the lack of stress," Moreno said. "The media and the fans are not hounding him. Why not consider it a place for him to stay?"

On his goal scoring prowress this season:
"Maybe now I am playing a little more ahead because (coach Robert Warzycha) asked for me and Alejandro (Moreno) to stay in the box," Schelotto said. "But for me, it's the same, goals or assists -- I like to score, but I'd trade a goal for winning the next game."

On his rapid learning of the English language:
Schelotto's command of a new language has helped him morph from Argentine mercenary to valued leader. Schelotto's wore the captain's armband when captain Frankie Hejduk missed six games because of injury and national-team duty.

McCullers on Schelotto:
"You start wondering whether you can take him off the field at end of a game," McCullers said. "The one time we kept him on, that's the game we won."

"He's giving it up all over the field. That's leadership. Everyone keeps talking about his age, but he's on a mission."


The Nordecke on Schelotto: We strongly voice our approval (first 50 seconds).


My thoughts: Schelotto is a natural born leader. The longer we can keep him (and players like Frankie) in Columbus playing and then coaching the more promising the future of the franchise is.

A guy that has won 19 championships and is a legend in Argentina(now a legend here in his own right) wants to stay in Columbus. What a steal. And, as a Crew fan something to be downright giddy about.

Think it's about time for a new Guillermo chant idea.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

5/26/09: Cornell Glen Signed By San Jose, Eligible To Play Tomorrow Night


In preparation for San Jose's match against Columbus, San Jose throws a curve ball and signs former Crew and Trinidad & Tobago International Cornell Glen.

According to Mercury News:
The Earthquakes have signed forward Cornell Glen, a member of the Trinidad and Tobago national team. Glen, known for his speed, has played with five other MLS teams and had a strong World Cup performance in 2006. He has scored 22 goals in 55 appearances for his national team.

"Cornell brings a change of pace to the team that we don't have right now," said John Doyle, the Earthquakes general manager. "He is a good all-around player."

Glen, 28, will be eligible to play (tomorrow) when the Earthquakes (1-6-2) face the Columbus Crew (1-2-6). The Earthquakes are riding a six-game winless streak and already are in danger of falling out of the playoff picture.


Glen received 22 starts and 4 goals for the Crew in 2005 during Robert Warzycha's year as an interim coach. The one positive of the possible switch in the game plan with Glen starting is that Warzycha is aware of how Glen plays.

Glen did not have much success in MLS after his year with the Crew. Glen was traded to the Rapids in 2006 receiving just one start, then Glen was traded in that same season to Los Angeles only receiving four starts and scoring 2 goals. Since then Glen has been languishing in the Trinidad & Tobago league with San Juan Jabloteh and Ma Pau SC.

5/26/09: Ljungberg To Be Ready For Seattle Against The Crew?



From The Seattle Times:
Freddie Ljungberg says only 1 percent of migraine sufferers experience the kind he does, the kind that forced the Sounders FC midfielder to miss the past two games.

They cause him vision loss, numbness on one side of the body and vomiting, and the only way to get over the headaches is plenty of rest in a darkened room.

The good news is that the worst of this migraine appears to be over for Ljungberg, who practiced Monday. If he can regain his strength and avoid another headache by the end of this week, he says, he should be ready to play Saturday when Seattle hosts the Columbus Crew.


My thoughts: Man, Seattle knew they had to contend with some bad hips with Ljuenberg. But, they didn't probably also know that they had to contend with migranes.

Monday, May 25, 2009

5/26/09: Yallop & San Jose Can Relate To Warzycha & The Crew, But Are In A Much Worse Situation.


Yallop has more to contend with then Warzycha in this match. This game is a must win for the Crew because everything, and I mean everything points the Crew's way for a victory.

Warzycha & The Crew can relate to Yallop & San Jose. And, I wouldn't be too surprised if Warzycha and Yallop head to a Mitchell's Steakhouse on Tuesday night to share their woe-ish stories in a "you too" therapy/dinner session.

Yes, the Crew and San Jose have had a similiar headache filled 9 games. Except San Jose is even worse off with only 5 points in 9 games and 6 losses compared to the Crew with their 9 points in 9 games and 2 losses. The main difference between the two teams is that San "Loo-se" just likes to lose a lot and the Columbus "everybody wins!" Crew likes to tie a lot. Record wise, the Crew has four more ties(1-2-6) compared to San Jose's four more losses(1-6-2). Competition wise, the Crew have actually played well as of late. Columbus should have won their last five games compared to San Jose who didn't even give themselves a chance against Houston on Saturday, allowing two goals in the first 12 minutes. San Jose was the only team in a tie bonanza weekend who were extremely outplayed.

Now San Jose, after a game 3 days ago and missing out on Memorial Day festivities with their families back in California, have to travel from Houston to Columbus for another game. If you forget for a moment that they have the best jobs in the world, you may feel a bit sorry for them.

Frank Yallop said the following on his team's contributions this season:
"Nobody is playing out their skin right now, which is what wins you games," said Yallop. "They're all kind of doing OK which in this league is not quite good enough because you're going up against guys who are talented."

For a team that has not been playing out of their skin. The stars are not aligning for San Jose to start doing so now after a big defeat, only three days rest, and traveling away from their homes on a holiday. San Jose's equation of currently crummy circumstances is unlikely to lead to an inspiring performance for them on Wednesday.

San Jose's equally uninspiring start has been surprising as well. San Jose was a team predicted(along with Toronto FC) to be 2009's version of the Crew. They have plenty of talent with a roster that includes players like Huckerby, Convey, Weaver, Johnson, Alvarez, Cannon, etc. They were an expansion team that made a run for the playoffs last season and looked poised for more success with great offseason acquistions.

But, it hasn't been going the way of San Jose so far. From MLSNet:
The San Jose manager (Yallop) admitted there isn't any magic bullet he can fire to turn around the team's fortunes. All he can do is roll up his sleeves and keep working with the group he has.

"There's no tricks to this game, there's no tricks to coaching, there's no tricks to how you play the game," said Yallop. "It's still 90 minutes and it's still 11 on 11. You can change formations, you can change players, but the group of players we have and the way we're playing is not getting it done at the moment. Obviously I'm the one that's able to change that."


Sounds almost like something that could come out of Warzycha's mouth. The difference is that the Crew have everything aligning for a victory, while Yallop and San Jose do not. Yallop could have an excuse or two if the result does not go his way. Crew have four more ties, four less losses, 11 days rest compared to 3, a nice holiday with the family back at home and time to clear their heads, and have been much more competitive recently in the league.

If the Crew doesn't win this game. A game where there is no excuse for a tie or a loss at home, heads could roll.

It's not a good omen that the last time an away team won at Columbus Crew Stadium, was San Jose, almost a year ago today.

5/25/09: Crew Undefeated At Home For Almost A Year. Will Tougher Restrictions On Nordecke Hurt An Atmosphere That Has Helped?


Will The Nordecke's Passion Be Checked This Wednesday? Bottle throwing by fans and organized swear chants(which apparently is a problem for the rest of the bible belt that surrounds the Nordecke) has led to increased security for Wednesday(which should have been there from the start of the year as it was for the entire end of last year). Possibly with security in the section as well.

The talk over security measures has kind of gone away. Two weeks ago, General Manager Mark McCullers became irrate over bottle throwing and swear chants in the Nordecke during the Kansas City game. Before the game McCullers addressed the section on faulty PA equipment(probably from 30 years ago, bought on Ebay from a local middle school) about ceasing to do both actions, although I couldn't hear him in the second row.

However, faulty equipment aside, I agree(as do most Nordeckians) with the FO that bottle throwing is idiotic and so is "Get The F**k Out" with no away fans, and although I can't find a huge problem with "You Suck Asshole" or the rest, I truly hope we are on our best behavior. In the same breath, I just hope that security does not go overboard. It would be odd if security went from one friendly dude in the front of the section that did a pump up gesture for Get The F**k Out" against TFC to 50 cops swarming the Nordecke on a power trip for anyone who even whispers a swear word. Sure, some of the unwarranted swearing needs to stop.. But, You Suck Asshole and other swearing when it is deserved for losers like Blanco or TFC fans, defines the difference between intimidating places to play and a Colorado or FC Dallas game.

We could be back to that possibly if the soccer mom's win and become the favored opinion on how things should be in Columbus Crew Stadium, we could be back to our old atmosphere from 2005 or 2006 in a year. It's all about finding a middle ground without hurting the intimidating atmosphere.

The atmosphere(along with the good team) has certainly turned what was one of the easiest places to play in MLS into one of the most dreaded. Hence, the quasi bond between the Nordecke and the players who have, in a way, resurrected the franchise together. From Craig Merz's "Crew Ready For Big Week":
The Crew are 1-0-4 in their last five matches and will look to extend their long unbeaten streak at home against the last team to win in Crew Stadium. Since the Earthquakes' 2-0 victory on June 7, the Crew have gone 10-0-5 at home in the regular season and playoffs.

The Crew has not lost at home for almost a full year, when they used to not be able to win at home. It's definitely mostly because of the excellent team. But, I also think if we had a section of 30 people instead of 2,000(like a FC Dallas) we wouldn't be undefeated at home. I think if we were having the atmosphere of 2006, we wouldn't be undefeated. It almost feels like the players don't want to let the section down (they look gutted with a tie at home when they come over to clap at the section). So, first I hope the most important thing, the bottle throwing, stops. I also think GTFO is unnecessary and we can come up with new, much more interesting chants. But, secondly, I hope that security and the FO doesn't get all SWAT on the Nordecke.

The way to grow more support for this club is through that area. Sure some conservative god fearing people are going to have problems with the nastyiness of the section at times. But, I think it just makes us different and slightly more interesting (a tamer Millwall of the MLS). I just hope we can find a middle ground and it doesn't lead to us waving at opposing players on corner kicks chanting "it's so nice to meet you! it's so nice to meet you! it's so nice to meet you!"

But, of course there will be a little conflict between people that are absolutely mental about a team(eat, sleep, and breath it) and families just looking to keep their kids occupied for the afternoon and who are not too affected win, lose, or tie.

5/25/09: Philadelphia Poo Union




Looks like some fan group hacked into World Soccer Shop and changed the Philadelphia Union logo. Check it out. I want a t-shirt like this.

5/25/09: Crew Roster Shakeup Talk


Noonan will either get more time on the field to see what he can do, or he will be possibly shipped elsewhere.

According to Shawn Mitchell's "Last Place Champs". The Crew are not looking for changes yet. But, basically if the Crew don't start scoring, changes could be made, and the read between the lines seems to indicate either Noonan or Moreno moving:
"We just need to finish," coach Robert Warzycha said. "When you're scoring only one goal a game you're always going to ask yourself if you have players on the bench who can score more goals. Maybe you use them. ... Or maybe you bring somebody new in."

For all of the Crew's troubles, Warzycha, McCullers and Crew technical director Brian Bliss are still in mulling mode. A shakeup to a roster full of players who won a championship six months ago isn't afoot. Yet.

"At some point you have to do something different," Warzycha said. "We're playing good soccer but if we're not going to win games we're going to have to change something."


When discussing possible moves:
The Crew has a quality veteran languishing on the bench behind Schelotto in Pat Noonan, although team brass would like to get the versatile but highly-paid Noonan more minutes in other positions to see if he can put his stamp on the attack.

It could also attempt to deal Moreno, although the Venezuelan is a valued workhorse who has been adept at drawing fouls, giving the ever-dangerous Schelotto free-kick opportunities.


The Crew is in mulling mode. I think whether the scoring starts against San Jose and Seattle will determine what type of way the Crew goes.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

5/24/09: Duncan and Frankie Called Up To Perspective Squads

Confederations Cup Squad:


According to Auckland's Times Online,
Goalkeepers: James Bannatyne (Petone/Team Wellington), Glen Moss (Melbourne Victory), Mark Paston (Wellington Phoenix).


Defenders: Andrew Boyens (New York Red Bulls), Tony Lochhead (Wellington Phoenix), David Mulligan (Wellington Phoenix), Steven Old (Kilmarnock), Aaron Scott (Melville United/Waitakere United), Ben Sigmund (Wellington Phoenix).


Midfielders: Andy Barron (Petone/Team Wellington), Leo Bertos (Wellington Phoenix), Tim Brown (Wellington Phoenix), Jeremy Christie (Wellington Phoenix), Simon Elliott (San Jose Earthquakes), Chris James (Tampere United), Duncan Oughton (Columbus Crew).

Forwards: Kris Bright (Panserraikas), Jeremy Brockie (North Queensland Fury), Chris Killen (Celtic), Shane Smeltz (Gold Coast United), Jarrod Smith (Seattle Sounders), Chris Wood (West Bromwich Albion).

For Costa Rica and Honduras:


From the Miami Herald,
Goalkeepers: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton).

Defenders: Carlos Bocanegra (Rennes), Jonathan Bornstein (Chivas USA), Danny Califf (Midtjylland), Jay DeMerit (Watford), Frankie Hejduk (Columbus Crew), Oguchi Onyewu (Standard de Liege), Heath Pearce (Hansa Rostock), Jonathan Spector (West Ham), Marvell Wynne (Toronto FC).

Midfielders: Freddy Adu (Monaco), DaMarcus Beasley (Rangers), Michael Bradley (Monchengladbach), Maurice Edu (Rangers), Benny Feilhaber (Aarhus), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA), Pablo Mastroeni (Colorado Rapids), Jose Francisco Torres (Pachuca).

Forwards: Jozy Altidore (Xerez), Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo), Charlie Davies (Hammarby), Clint Dempsey (Fulham), Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy).

Saturday, May 23, 2009

5/23/09: Crew Support In Seattle.




Apparently there is a group of Ohio transplants in Seattle who will have their own block to support the Crew next Saturday at Qwest Field.

The facebook link for the group is here.

FROM THE POST:
If you haven't heard the buzz around town, Seattle's getting a new pro soccer team.

Well, the 2008 MLS Champion Columbus Crew are coming to town on May 30th to take them on. Let's give them a big Ohio-transplant welcome.

If you'd like to join a group of fans dressed in yellow and black, please accept this invitation - and invite your friends. Or, if you just want to check out a game, tailgate, and celebrate a sure win, there's nothing like being a visitors' fan in pro sports!

Tickets are $20. We'll have block seating in Section 204.

WEAR YELLOW AND BLACK!


Has 20 guests, plus 10 maybes, and with some people that I know traveling the Crew should have a pretty decent group of away fans.

Deck the town yellow and black, and hopefully the big man(Sigi) won't get confused on what block to go to after the game.

5/23/09: Tryouts For Crew Academy U-15 to U-18



Received this in my email today, figured I would share it for local teenagers or parents who either think respectively that they have the skill or that their child has the skill:

Crew Soccer Academy Tryouts

Take your game to the next level with the Crew Soccer Academy! Crew Soccer Academy provides the greatest opportunity and exposure for players to reach their highest level, and is one of the few programs in the country that is fully funded. No costs—for player fees, travel, accommodations, meals and Crew replica gear—are incurred by families. Players train and play at the Crew Training Facility and Crew Stadium.

Age Group
Date
Time
Location

U15/U16 Boys
Tuesday, May 26
6:00pm - 7:30pm
Obetz

U15/U16 Boys
Thursday, May 28
6:00pm - 7:30pm
Obetz

U17/U18 Boys
Tuesday, May 26
6:00pm - 7:30pm
Obetz

U17/U18 Boys
Thursday, May 28
6:00pm - 7:30pm
Obetz


FOR MORE INFO ON CREW ACADEMY TRYOUTS CLICK HERE.

ALSO FOR INFO ON CREW JUNIORS TRYOUTS WHICH ARE COMING UP AS WELL, CLICK HERE.

5/23/09: Alternate Forms Of Revenue



When the Crew were getting ready to call it a night in Los Angeles before their game on Sunday, the North End of the stadium was still rocking during Rock On The Range last weekend. 30,000 rock fans packed into the stadium on both Saturday and Sunday. "Man, how cool is that? Crew Stadium!" said drummer Tommy Lee in reference to the venue. "Well tonight this is Motley Crue stadium."

Crew Stadium is also hosting Kenny Chesney today, Country Jam on June, 20th, 2009, and Rascal Flatts once again on August 9th. Crew Stadium also will try to host other concert events this Summer during away games to bring in more revenue.



Anyone know how much revenue the Crew makes on these concert events?

5/23/09: Something Afoot Trade Wise?


Decision time for the Crew brass. San Jose and Seattle game will be crucial to see what sort of move or non-move the Crew makes. (Picture By Kiichiro Sato, AP Photo)


After reading Mitchell's "What to do, what to do", it seems that the Crew at the moment has no clue what direction they are headed. A week or two ago, Mitchell said that possibly Noonan or Moreno could be moved for salary space. Now add a possible move to Europe for Ekpo, Rogers, or Marshall to the list.

The preference of the club and manager Mark McCullers is pretty obvious and shared by the supporters:
“My preference is for this team to come into form,” McCullers said. “That’s the best result for everybody, to achieve the expectations that we set out at beginning of year. We’ll get some time off, come back with a home game against San Jose and go from there.

“I do think we need to shake things up and try to break out of the slump we’re in. That’s not pointing fingers at anybody but I don’t think you can just hope its going to change. You have to try to do something to break this momentum that we have, this momentum that is not good.”


My thoughts: Although Rogers, Ekpo, or Marshall could head overseas at some point, that time isn't now. Rogers hasn't had the most spectacular year yet but is a crucial midfield component, Ekpo has been excellent in the last few weeks, and our defense becomes about 50% percent of it's current self if Marshall goes.

I think if a move has to be made, it has to be for someone who is not performing or not even playing. Right now I think it would hurt the Crew more to get rid of Marshall, Ekpo, or Rogers then it would hurt to get rid of Noonan or Moreno. I think if you combined the two strikers, the Crew could get a pretty good striker for their salaries while not hurting any other position. But, that might not be the best option either.

My preference as well is to keep a good team together and sometimes if you mess with a good team, especially by getting rid of someone I think is poised to have a great year yet in Ekpo, Rogers, and Marshall, then it could lead to a much worse stituation.

Getting rid of one hell of a player(Ekpo, Rogers, Marshall) for a question mark striker isn't the solution. I think if a move has to be made, it has to be made for someone not performing or playing. It also has to be a straight up positional trade.

Additionally, I'm not giving up on Moreno. I think he had a hell of a goal against Chicago and will get it together. Just when the team isn't finishing that is the first place everyone looks no matter what else the player does during the game. Fans can't help it the world over.

Anyways, possibly no trade is needed and all the Crew has to do is switch the lineup up for a few games. Maybe throw another striker up top. Or when Moffat comes back, we can try either Rogers or Ekpo up top at striker, I think both can play there. Or try Noonan or Lenhart up top next game to shake things up as McCullers wants.

What do you think is going to happen? Any predictions? I have a feeling that June will be a lot more interesting on the transfer market for the Crew. Although, the fans, the team, the coach, and the manager didn't want that to be the case at all. It is, what it is and the Crew will find wins somehow.

5/23/09: Top Draft Pick Gerstenberger Practicing With Team Starting Monday



According to Shawn Mitchell, Paul Gerstenberger, the Crew’s second-round SuperDraft pick who elected to stay at Boston College to finish his degree, will join the team for practice on Monday.

My thoughts: The Crew's once fixed roster doesn't appear to be fixed anymore. With no roster spots, expect Gerstenberger to compete over the next month or so for a guarenteed roster spot with guys like Nyazamba and Elenio.

Friday, May 22, 2009

5/22/09: Site Redesign



I'm working on another website redesign at the moment. I'm fooling around with some website design code(html) for a design I like and if it works out, I'll switch up the website. Might be slow on the news today and tomorrow. But, I'll add more news tonight.

Cheers

Thursday, May 21, 2009

5/21/09: Crew Getting Prepared For The Earthquakes A Week And A Half Early


Crew get some literal experience.

From Tribalfootball:
Following a 4.7 magnitude earthquake on Sunday in the Los Angeles area, Columbus Crew players have explained the experience as they were staying close to the epicentre of the quake.

"I heard all the guys in the hotel were nervous being on the 17th floor," said goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum, who was away from the team visiting his brother in Los Angeles.

"I was nervous at first but quickly realized what was going on and that it would pass pretty quickly. It was my first quake so I was pretty excited."

Defenders Danny O'Rourke and Eric Brunner were walking to a restaurant when the quake hit.

"It was crazy," O'Rourke said.

"I felt the ground was pulling me in one direction. I wasn't walking. I was moving. It was pretty interesting. We were right by the beach and some people came running out of a hotel and said, 'Grab everybody.' Others said it happens all the time."


How to react to an Earthquake:


The Crew survived that earthquake; and, now they look to conquer the one coming into town next Wednesday.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

5/20/09: Palermo Doesn't Rule Out Joining Guille, If Boca Directors Don't Renew Contract In June


Reunited and it feels so good? Keep a watch on what Boca does on June 30th.

Beginning excerpt from Sports Illustrated:
A classic target man whose best skills don't appear to be fading, Palermo hopes to end a glorious career at Boca Juniors. But he hasn't ruled out a long-rumored move to Major League Soccer, where he could team up with former Boca teammate Guillermo Barros Schelotto with the Columbus Crew.

My thoughts: There has to be some reason why this rumor just won't go away and right now with the Crew's trainwreck start, this may gain some momentum. The possibility of a Palermo move that seemed impossible at the beginning of the season with a fixed lineup of talented returning champions and no cap space, all of a sudden seems much more possible.

Especially when chewing on Shawn Mitchell's blog from a week ago:

--With July 1 (the date semi-guaranteed contracts become guaranteed) inching closer the Crew's brass has changed its tune a bit when it comes to possible player-personnel moves. To paraphrase, “if it ain't broke don't fix it" has morphed into "what can we do to improve our club that makes sense." That's no surprise considering a 1-5-2 start and the interest other MLS teams have shown in several players on the Crew's roster.

To chew on:

**Is Pat Noonan's $175,000 salary coupled with his reserve role doing the Crew any good? Could he be of more service to another team? Could the Crew, with little wiggle room under the salary cap, put that money to better use?

**Would a speedier, better-finishing striker than Alejandro Moreno be a better complement to Guillermo Barros Schelotto?

**Is the Crew's central midfield still considered as deep and talented as it once was?

Hefty questions, all, and maybe moot if the Crew can reel off a few wins in a row...


My thoughts on this are if the Crew could get their hands on Palermo. It might be the end of Noonan and Moreno in a Crew jersey, (both making upwards of $150,000, both not having the greatest of years, their salaries combined would clear over $300,000 in cap space which might be enough for Palermo to start out with). Schelotto and Palermo have had a great relationship at Boca and would get the Crew back on track, in all probability, with having a striker with a better strike rate.

However, Palermo's age is a concern. Would it be worth it to put money into a Schelotto and Palermo relationship if both could be gone at the end of the year or the next year? Maybe the Crew opens up that money for a younger striker with a good strike rate and more speed instead. Maybe Warzycha tries to tap a polish talented striker again. Warzycha almost succeeded in acquiring Celtic striker Maciej Zurawski at the beginning of 2008 to team up with Guillermo Barros Schelotto.

Or maybe they just stay with the status quo and hope for the best. If so, Moreno has to start to score soon or we need to give Lenhart or someone a run out.

But, overall, it's just not working in the final third right now. Warzycha is frustrated with the lack of finishing, especially after the LA game, and so is probably McCullers. They were interested in other strikers, like Zurawski, before Moreno's great year last year. Moreno isn't having as great of a year this year and others are not helping in the production, and therefore either we get a new striker for Noonan's salary or in a Noonan trade (might be the best move, as maybe we go to two strikers with Moreno and Noonan's replacement. Or use Moreno as first striker off the bench). Or we get a new striker by combining both of those two salaries. I just think all signs point to some new striker.

Either MLS, Palermo, or some Polish player.

From Sports Illustrated's interview with Martin Palermo:
SI.com: What do you know about MLS? Have you seen any games?

Palermo: I've seen more matches since the arrival of Guille. I follow him, and from doing that, I have been able to watch several matches -- those that are televised in Argentina, of course.

SI.com: If you don't come to an agreement to renew your contract with Boca, would a possible move to MLS tempt you?

Palermo: It is something I always speak about with my agent [Gustavo Goñi, the same person who negotiated Schelotto's move to Columbus] because there are always rumors. But right now I'm only thinking about what will happen at Boca.

SI.com: Has Guillermo told you anything about MLS?

Palermo: He is very happy and well adapted. Most of all because last year he demonstrated his quality and helped his team win the title.

SI.com: A couple of years ago, it was reported that Guille tried to convince you to join him in Columbus. What happened?

Palermo: There were some talks but nothing came from it.

SI.com: MLS has signed lots of Argentines in the last few years, players of tremendous quality and some with national-team experience. The league also has been linked to others like Juan Sebastian Verón, Ariel Ortega and you. Why do you think Argentine players are so popular?

Palermo: Because the Argentine player generally makes a difference. And Guillermo provided evidence of that with Columbus last year.

5/20/09: Seattle Fans Flood The Polls Although Some Of Their Players Don't Deserve It


Drew Carey and Sounders fans are one or two away from having a straight Seattle FC player ballot.

From the Sounders FC Blog:
As currently constituted, the First XI would consist of eight Sounders FC players. The only exceptions in the opening week of voting are veteran Columbus Crew fullback Frankie Hejduk, who holds a slim lead on Seattle's James Riley, Dwayne De Rosario, a Toronto FC midfielder, and Los Angeles Galaxy forward Landon Donovan.

My thoughts: The point of voting for an all star is to vote for the best performing team through the games that have been played, not a straight ticket. On my ballot I only voted for Guillermo Barros Schelotto and Chad Marshall. For Seattle I only voted for Casey Keller because he is the only one having an all star caliber year, so far. I didn't vote for Frankie Hejduk because he hasn't played. I didn't vote for Montero or Evans from Seattle because there are strikers like Wolff and McBride and midfielders like Schelotto, Nagamura, Blanco, Davis, and Pappa who are having way better years.

I just hate the amatuer notion of the new teams to vote all their players, even the ones who have not had anywhere close to an all star year so far. Real Salt Lake did the same a couple years back. Thank god though that the fans only make up a 1/3rd of the voting.

Be objective fans and vote for the best players so far this year. The reason why the fan voting only takes up 1/3rd is because of this ballot stuffing.

Monday, May 18, 2009

5/18/09: Crew vs. LA Post Tie Thoughts



Sunday, May 17, 2009

5/17/09: Crew vs Galaxy- Shambolic Finish Once Again, Time For Some Ch-Ch-Changes.


Eddie Lewis winds up for his goal scoring tie against the impenetrable Andy Greunebaum.

**To start out with, Eric Brunner is probably 20 times the player O'Rourke is. Lets just seal the deal on the O'Rourke saga and put Brunner in central defense as the full time starter. Brunner has better height, in all probability much better speed and skills, and definitely more patience. He is also less likely to put this team in a stituation to give up late minute red cards or penalty kicks.

Oh, and we still get that hometown feel. Probably the main reason O'Rourke gets a free pass as often as he does.

**Warzycha with the ties is starting to wear out his welcome. If we are dominating a game, keep playing at that same level. Instead of bunkering once we get a goal. We played a scared last 15 minutes against a team that has one(maybe two) good players in Donovan and Ricketts.

**I'm pretty confident that each late game tie we have had, or at least all but one has come after Guillermo has been subbed out. I don't know what that means, but it almost seems like the Crew hits the off switch as soon as Guillermo hits the bench.

**We need a real striker. We dominated a very poor LA Galaxy team all game. It should have been 4-0. But, our attack has no finishing ability. Moreno and Gaven like to beat the last defender and then fall down a lot(I guess it's easier to hope for a phantom PK foul then actually try to finish a good scoring opportunity). And, Moreno just does not have any speed. If the guy had speed he would be a dream striker, he would probably be the best striker in MLS with all of his other attributes. But, he is just too slow and can't finish.

Come July we need to find ourselves a 20 goals a year striker.

**Rogers needs to get confident again and not be scared to take on glorious defenders (roll eyes) like Tony "Big Cat" Sanneh.

**How was the opportunity with Guillermo in the 84th not converted? Whoever Guillermo passed it to, I think Moreno, needs to go to finishing school.

**Overall, maybe Warzycha is just a bad coach. It's not the end of the world. We all like the guy. But, some players are just good players and don't translate into competent coaches.

It's just hard to find anywhere else to point to when the Crew are 100 times the team based on skills and overall ability then the LA team they faced today. But, they can't finish any of their opportunities, finally finish a gift, then they bunker down and cower against a sh*t side instead of going for the juggular in the last 15 minutes.

The late ties, all six of them, sort of show that maybe, just maybe the game plan after we get a lead needs to be switched up. That means not to cower, but to play the same game that got you the lead in the first place.

One could say on our previous ties, as Mitchell did, that they were all against good sides. Well, LA is not a good team at all. They are awful in just about every facet of the game. It's just unacceptable to tie a game that your side has the ability to win 4-0. It's unacceptable to cower against crap sides, because even old foggies and USL talents are going to finish a chance at some point over 90 minutes if you do so.

5/17/09: La Turbina Amarilla Website



Wasn't aware that Turbina had their website up yet. But, they have a new one up as well. Has songs, pictures, tailgate information, and more.

Check out La Turbina's website here.