Feelings of inevitability starting to build in special season
If this were any other season, I would have rage quit a recent Saturday's game against Toronto FC in the 57th minute when TFC went up 3-0. Thank Guillermo I didn't, because 10 minutes later the comeback was on.
When Gyasi Zardes redirected a Federico Higuain corner kick into the back of the net, you knew there was more to come. You could feel it: This year's team is different. The other boot, it ain't dropping.
Sure enough, in the 81st minute, Alex Crognale drilled a loose ball low and hard into the corner of the goal, past a wall of Toronto's defense; and then, finally, in the 90th minute, Higuain completed the comeback with a penalty-kick goal.
Each goal felt inevitable. The lads could sense it, too.
Crew SC centerback Josh Williams said after the game the team “could kind of feel Toronto get a little tense, and we began to grow in confidence.”
“So once the second one happened, we were like a pack of wolves,” he continued. “I made sure to look at everyone and kind of let them know [that] goal puts us within reach. To look in other guys' eyes, the look in all their eyes was just intense.”
With the tie, the Trillium Cup will rest where it belongs — in Columbus —for at least one more season.
And if this is the last season, oh what a season it's been! Even after giving up three goals Saturday, Crew SC still, somehow, lays claim to the league's stingiest defense, despite playing more games to date than any other team but one.
Momentum is building. More wins, Guillermo willing, are coming. Possibly even another Cup. Can you feel it? Can you see the intensity in their eyes and hear the wolf pack circling?
On Sunday, I re-watched the game simply to savor these moments again. The substitutions that changed the tenor of the game. The energy and the swarming pressure imposed by the entire Crew SC team. The laser strike from Harrison Afful that somehow clanged off the crossbar and down without crossing the goal line. The slick fluidity of Eduardo Sosa, who made his Crew SC debut. Old man Ricardo Clark trying out his best Gareth Bale impression.
The game highlights, in other words, were many, and given the way the week started, they were also majorly needed by the Crew faithful.
In the last week, You Know Who released his latest stadium renderings for his proposed venue in You Know Where.
Officials in You Know Where likewise released a study of the site that said it'd be suitable for a soccer stadium.
And MLS also granted an expansion team to FC Cincinnati. (Commissioner Don Garber was non-committal about what that addition meant for Crew SC.)
Another boot, it would appear, is about to drop. And if I were a betting man, I'd wager it'll fall, when it does eventually fall, on You Know Who.
Do I have anything other than an educated guess to support this? Not at all.
But I can smell You Know Who's fear. And like any good wolf pack, our comrades in Save the Crew are circling.
Can you sense it, too?