By The Numbers pres. by Ohio Business Machines | The crew travels to Nashville SC on Sunday
The Black & Gold return to MLS action on Sunday night when the Columbus Crew travel south again to take on Eastern Conference club Nashville SC. While Columbus faced the conference’s top team last week, it’s the second-placed team that Wilfried Nancy and his team will play against this weekend.
10v10 – Not a big deal but Sunday night could see two of the league’s best talents in Lucas Zelarayán and Hany Mukhtar. We all know Lucas, who has scored or provided an assist in five of his last seven MLS games. The Armenia international has scored in consecutive games and already has six goals and three assists under his belt in 2023. But then there’s Hany, who was named Landon Donovan’s 2022 MVP. Mukhtar has scored as many as eight goals and provided six assists in 12 league games this season. While Crew fans always have the pleasure of seeing top-flight attacking players, the clash between these two on opposite sides of the field is the headline of this game.
13 – After Wednesday night’s Lamar Hunt US Open Cup elimination to Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, the squad can regroup Sunday night when the club travels to Nashville’s GEODIS Park for the first time. With the Open Cup in the rear-view mirror, the Black & Gold will only play league games for the next two months until the Leagues Cup gets underway on July 23. Over the past month, Nancy has rotated his roster heavily to compete in two competitions. Aside from a home game against the Colorado Rapids on Wednesday night next week, the team has no midweek games scheduled until Independence Day. While that means there could be fewer roster rotations, it also means we have a better idea of which side Nancy favors mid-season.
9 – Nashville SC, once a Western Conference opponent, is now in the Eastern Conference after St. Louis CITY SC joined the MLS this season. Nashville has done well in the east so far and currently sits second in the conference standings. Nashville also lost its game in the US Open Cup this week – a 2-1 defeat at Inter Miami CF – and go into Sunday night unbeaten in their last six league games. As mentioned above, Mukhtar is the main attacking threat but the club’s defense also deserves praise. With just nine goals allowed in 14 games, Nashville’s defense was the best in the league.
Columbus was defeated 1-0 when the clubs met at Lower.com Field on April 2, 2022. The last time they met in Tennessee, the game ended 1-1. That night – October 20, 2021 – Zelarayán scored in the 75th minute before Mukhtar equalized two minutes later.
Who: Columbus Crew at Nashville SC
When: Sunday, May 27 at 7:30 p.m
How to listen: 97.1 HD3/The Fan Stream, La Mega 103.1 FM
Current Status: Columbus Crew – Eighth in Eastern Conference; Nashville SC – runners-up in the Eastern Conference