After the midweek win against Inter Miami, Saturday was supposed to be the Columbus Crew’s best chance to earn back-to-back home wins for the first time in the 2022 season. Instead, with a lineup close to first choice, the Crew was hampered by excellent goalkeeping and an uninspired attack that failed to break through the Chicago Fire defense.
Despite 25 shots, including 9 on target, the Black & Gold settled for a 0-0 draw with the Fire, their 13th tie of the year. This is how Crew players rated in-game.
Eloy Room (7.0) – A shutout is always good, and Saturday’s was no exception, as the Crew needed Room’s only save to keep the Fire off the score sheet. The goalkeeper was never seriously challenged, but he did everything that was asked of him and ensured good organization at the baseline.
William Arenas (7.0) – As Sands continues to fill in for Pedro Santos as he recovers from injury, he has shown growth. Sands was fearless pushing forward on offense and has both the technical ability and range to cover defensively. The Black & Gold clearly have some talent in the youngster and a suitable replacement for Santos.
Jonathan Mensah (7.5) – The Columbus captain played well defensively and was also a constant presence on corner kicks and in attack. He finished the match with three shots, two on target. He also contributed three clearances and two tackles, defending the baseline and providing a good structure for the Crew’s defense.
Milos Degenek (7.0) – Degenek continued the excellent defensive play that did enough to earn MLS Team of the Week honors. He finished the game with three interceptions and had a tackle, a punt and a blocked shot.
Esteban Moreira (7.0) – Moreira was solid defensively and helped drive the right side of the field, creating opportunities for Black & Gold. The winger has shown his offensive ability and his passing has been strong. He had multiple key passes that helped move players on the attack.
Luis Diaz (7.5) – Diaz has been excellent in recent weeks and continued that performance on Saturday. He was a terror to the Fire’s backline and made brilliant runs that should have earned him a goal or an assist, utilizing his game-breaking speed.
Aidan Morris (6.5) – Morris has been inconsistent in recent weeks, but on Saturday he played well throughout the game despite a few moments where his aggressive nature led him to force the ball in situations where recirculating the ball would help the team maintain possession. and find a better opportunity.
Darlington Nagbe (7.0) – Nagbe had a perfect 62/62 passing on Saturday night. That stat was a remarkable testament to his ability to play without pressure and keep possession moving for the team. He was also the only starter not to take a shot (excluding the goalkeeper), which may be by design. However, Columbus is at the team’s best when Nagbe adds more offensively and the Crew could have used more offensively from the team’s All-Star.
Derrick Etienne Jr. (7.0) – Etienne couldn’t recreate Soldier Field’s braces performance the last time the Black & Gold touched the Fire. In 67 minutes of playing time, the left winger played well for the team, but he couldn’t integrate as much into the attack as he has in the past.
Lucas Zelarayán (6.5) – Columbus fans will be encouraged that the hamstring strain that kept Zelarayán out of the midweek contest did not end up being more serious. The Black Crew’s No. 10 was back on the pitch on Saturday and had a positive possession, showing the value he brings to the team’s attack. However, Zelarayán kept fighting to take the corners of Black & Gold.
Cucho Hernandez (7.5) – Hernandez has had 15 shots in the last two games, but has yet to find the back of the net in those games. This goalless game can be attributed to bad luck and excellent saves, but Colón needs it to score goals. Watching Hernandez, it’s clear he’s playing with passion and is frustrated by his lack of scoring, but ultimately the team must figure out how to create more dangerous chances.
Kevin Mill (6.5) – Molino entered once again for Etienne and played just as well. He couldn’t put together a shot in his 23 minutes of action, but he did well distributing the ball and promoting the Crew’s attack.
Arthur (7.0) – Artur came on in the 80th minute for Morris and certainly tried to get on the scoreboard with a long shot that bounced awkwardly for the keeper. The midfielder didn’t have much time to integrate into the game but he made good use of the opportunity he was given.
Mohamed Farsi (6.5) – Farsi came on in the 80th minute for Sands and played enthusiastically on defense. He wasn’t seriously tested defensively, but he did try to push forward and find a late winner.
Yaw Yeboah (N/A) – Yeboah was too late an offensive substitution, as Diaz and the rest of the Crew attack had been struggling since the 60s.the minute on. Yeboah came in at 86the minute, too late to make an impact.
Caleb Porter (5.0) – Porter presented almost the same line-up from the team’s previous two games and both the players and the strategy seemed tired. The team lacked creativity and while Black & Gold were unlucky enough not to score at least two or three goals, they ultimately didn’t do enough to dismantle a team that was obviously playing for a draw. Columbus needed rotation and Porter didn’t have the right players or the right tactics to find a winner and get a result.