Show Your Crew This Weekend
So you didn't get tickets to the MLS Cup Final between Columbus Crew SC and the Portland Timbers. Or you haven't followed Columbus' pro soccer team very closely this season. Or, well, you have no clue what we're talking about. Not a problem! Jump on that bandwagon this weekend, wear your black and gold proudly and show the world the entire city is behind Crew's run at a second-ever MLS Cup. We'll get you up to speed.
When is the game?
Game time is 4 p.m. Sunday.
Where can I watch it?
Catch it on ESPN or UniMas in the comfort of your home or, if you prefer, in a rousing bar setting. Official supporter pubs include Fourth Street Bar & Grill, Land-Grant Brewing, Jimmy V's locations and Hofbrauhaus. You could also politely ask your neighborhood bartender to turn on the game; your fellow patrons will undoubtedly thank you.
Who are the players?
The Crew has a 28-man roster, and just listening to the broadcast, you'll become familiar with many of the players.
Forward Kei Kamara has been a league darling this season, after scoring 22 goals on the season, making endearing heart shapes with his hands and being named the league's humanitarian of the year for his work in his native Sierra Leone. Steve Clark is the seemingly bionic goalkeeper who makes breathtaking saves and takes a tiny bit of tension out of moments when the opposing team advances on our net. Wil Trapp is a young player with tons of talent and potential-he's a Columbus native and a product of the club's Crew Academy. Justin Meram scored an insane goal in the first seconds of the team's last home playoff game. Federico Higuain is a veteran-you'll hear him cheered with shouts of "Pipa!," his nickname (one he shares with his father, Jorge Higuain, who was a pro soccer player in Argentina). Keep your eye on team captain and defender Michael Parkhurst, another pro veteran who's done a stint with the U.S. men's national team, and Ethan Finlay, who had a breakout regular season with 12 goals and 13 assists.
What do I wear?
Simply, black and gold. Buy team gear at stores all over town. We're partial to the designs sold at Homage, including the classic "Columbus 'Til I Die" and "Glory to Columbus" T-shirts.
What do I cheer?
Mostly, "Go, Crew!" or "Yeah, Crew!" But if you want to get fancy, check out supporter group websites for some classic songs and chants. Here's an example, via Crew Union:
Glory to Columbus
Glory to Columbus!
Go! Let's Go Columbus!
Glory to Columbus!
Here we goooooo!
(Hey! Hey hey hey hey!)
Or do like the players do and let Adele pump you up for match time.
What is this cup, exactly?
A damn fine piece of equipment! Made by Tiffany, natch, the Philp F. Anschutz trophy is made mostly of sterling silver. It was last in Crew SC's possession in 2008. See highlights from the Crew's thrilling 2008 victory below.