Wednesday, August 18, 2010

8/18/2010: Crew vs. Municipal Preview: Crew To Face Two Former Crew


Mario Rodriguez (above) and Freddy Garcia, both former Crew players, now return with Municipal.

The Columbus Crew will face off against two former Crew players tonight in their Champions League opener at 7:30 p.m. against Municipal. Both Mario Rodriguez and Freddy Garcia called Columbus Crew Stadium home at different times in their career and now will return tonight. The familiarity of surroundings for those two players should help Guatemalan champions Municipal tonight; while the return of Eddie Gaven, who scored a vital winning tally at Costa Rican champs Saprissa in last year's Champions League, should greatly benefit the Columbus Crew tonight.

Municipal's Rodriguez played one season for the Crew in 2005, the midfielder scored one goal in 19 games before going back to Municipal. Municipal's Freddy Garcia spent two years with the Crew from 2002 to 2003, gaining 27 appearances and one goal, before making a successful living at Municipal since 2004. Crew players Frankie Hejduk and Duncan Oughton, as well as Crew Head Coach Robert Warzycha were teammates with Rodriguez and Garcia and that should offset their effectiveness a bit.

The Crew will be glad to regain the use of Eddie Gaven and defender Andy Iro tonight against Municipal. The Crew have dealt with a bevy of injuries as of late that has affected their results against Real Salt Lake and Chivas USA over the past few weeks. However, the Crew will be without Steven Lenhart, their only striker who has been getting on the scoresheet lately, who will be serving a red card suspension from the Crew's 3-2 loss in Mexico to Toluca in last year's Champions League quarterfinals. With no Lenhart and with new signing Andres Mendoza still unavailable due to some transfer issues with his former Turkish club, it's likely that Emilio Renteria will shift back up top from the midfield.

PREDICTION: Despite having players that are familiar with the Crew organization, Garcia and Rodriguez were not a part of the current Crew organization that is used to success. Further, that duo, along with Pando Ramirez are MLS rejects that couldn't make it in MLS but now have solid careers in Guatemala with Municipal. Therefore, the Crew just have too much quality for Municipal and the Crew win this game 2-nil, goals from Renteria and Gaven.

2 comments:

  1. I think it would be a perfect game because they have a big rivals since this cup began, specially because Municipal has an Star I mean Mario Rodriguez, he's so talented.m10m

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