Crew: All Stars? No, but some of them are

  • Dispatch file photo
By Columbus Alive
From the June 14, 2012 edition

The Crew has been out of action since their May 26 victory over Chicago, but the hiatus ends with Saturday’s match at New England.

That’s fantastic news for Crew fans who’ve been spinning their wheels hoping May’s momentum continues. After a break for World Cup qualifying, it’s finally time to move on with the season. But first let’s look backward one more time because All-Star voting is underway.

MLS fans have a part in selecting the squad that will face Chelsea FC in Philadelphia next month, which means Columbus fans can vote for their favorite Crew players. But who actually deserves your votes?

Vote proudly: Andy Gruenebaum, Sebastian Miranda, Eddie Gaven

Among the six Crew players on the league’s list of suggested candidates, only these three have been playing at all-star caliber.

Gruenebaum has dominated the goalmouth in a way nobody saw coming; he single-handedly kept the Crew alive in San Jose. Miranda has been a stalwart presence at right back, and he headed home a miracle goal from 20 yards out. Gaven continues to bring dignity and tenacity to the midfield — not to mention a scoring touch.

Vote loyally: Chad Marshall, Milovan Mirosevic, Emilio Renteria

If I had to predict who would be having all-star campaigns before the season, these would have been my guys, but their performance has been hindered for various reasons.

Marshall was going strong but has been sidelined for weeks with his latest concussion. Mirosevic has been plagued by injuries too, and despite many flashes of quality, his play has been inconsistent (except that he consistently blunders goal-scoring chances). The offensive explosion that won Renteria MLS Player of the Week honors came on the heels of a season-long slump.

Still, who doesn’t vote for the players on their hometown team? All-Star voting is all about homerism!

Vote defiantly: Josh Williams, Danny O’Rourke, Justin Meram

These guys aren’t nominated for an all-star spot, but they should be. They’ve all kicked ass at their respective positions and made a huge difference when they’ve gotten a chance to play.

Williams has been downright Marshall-esque at center back. Upon returning from injury, O’Rourke’s impact on the midfield was tectonic; alas, he got injured again. Meram had a similar impact where it counts — the scoreboard.