CREW EARN SECOND MLS CUP WITH 3-0 WIN OVER SOUNDERS

A determined Columbus Crew team outplayed a Seattle Sounder squad to earn a 3-0 MLS Cup victory over the defending Champions. Midfielder Lucas Zelarayan  led  the Crew to their second MLS Cup Trophy  with two goals and an assist and  was named MLS Cup MVP for his effort.

CATASTROPHIC SLOW START

The Sounders started out lethargic, timid and downright indifference to the task at hand. The Crew came out on the front foot and  attacked the Sounders defense with vigor and determination.  The Crew’s strategy of  moving the Seattle defense by switching the ball from side to side then attack the belly of the Sounders defense worked to perfection.   The Crew had two corner kicks in in the first four minutes and their relentless pressure paid dividends in the 17th minute. Midfielder Harrison Afful’s  cross from the right side of the field to the left  side found a wide open Lucas Zelarayan who rifled the ball into the back of the Sounders net for the 1-0 lead.

DOUBLE TROUBLE FOR SOUNDERS

The Crew continued to attack the Sounders  right flank  with long  runs from fullback  Milton Valenzuela  and forward Derrick Etienne who were causing match up problems for Sounder fullback Alex Roldan.  Centerback  Yeimar Gomez and Midfielder  Joao Paulo were slow to aide  Roldan in defending the overlap runs.  The Crew doubled their lead in the 31st minute when Zelarayan spotted an open Etienne on the right side of the Sounders goal box. Etienne’s right footed blast double the  home sides lead.

Sounders forward Jordan Morris makes a move towards goal.

SECOND HALF ATTEMPT FALLS SHORT

The Sounders came out of the halftime with determined to make a game of it. Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer inserted Gustav Svensson and Brad Smith for Joevin Jones and Nouhou to start the second. The moves brought more possession to the Sounders play. With more possession Schmetzer brought in forward  Will Bruin and fullback  Kelvin Leerdam in the 60th minute for Joao Paulo and  Alex Roldan . The Sounders had several good looks at the goal but the chances went begging. The Sounders best chance came in the 80th minute when Jordan Morris header hit the post  after a Nicolas Lodeiro corner kick. The game was done and dusted  two minutes later when   Zelarayan completed his brace with a left footed shot that found the left top corner to give the  Crew  the 3-0 lead.

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