Metro finally wakes up to down Crew, 2:1
March 18, 2023
We saw this story before. A dominating defensive performance, offensive ineptitude... Wait! What the hell was that?
In the 33rd minute of what was so far a stunted game, a ball was sent into the Metro half that Andres Reyes seemed to have covered. But a bad touch from the Colombian caught Carlos Coronel in no-man's-land, as the goalkeeper decided to wander out of the box. It was one of the easiest goals anyone could have scored, and just like that, Metro was down.
Perhaps it was the wake-up call they needed. Metro played a terrific second half, coming back with two excellent goals to beat Columbus 2:1. The gamewinner was scored by Dante Vanzeir, who opened his account in the most perfect of ways.
Metro was without Lewis Morgan and Kyle Duncan, which meant that Dylan Nealis and Cameron Harper got starts. With the team down at the break, Gerhard Struber put on another forward, as Elias Manoel stepped in for Daniel Edelman. Then, in the 58th, Metro finally got on the board, and it was mostly thanks to Cory Burke. The Jamaican, who looked noticeably hurt in the first half, muscled a Crew player off the ball at the midfield stripe, and took off up the field, fighting off all comers. With options on either side, he decided to take the shot from the top of the penalty area, only to see the ball saved. Thankfully, it bounced right back to the onrushing Luquinhas, who easily redirected it in to tie the game.
The winner game four minutes from time. A perfectly looped ball from Cristian Casseres found John Tolkin on the left edge of the box. The youngster took the ball on the bounce and sent an amazingly perfect cross to the back post, where Vanzeir one-timed it home from close range. It was a brilliant play for all participants, and the type of a goal that Metro has missed since the heyday of the Bradley Wright-Phillips era.
Columbus tried their best to come back, actually firing a shot on goal that Coronel had covered. (For those counting, that gave them three for the game, equaling Metro's allowed total for the entire season.) But it was all for naught, as Metro finally earned its first victory of the season. The first of many, we hope.
The first of many for Vanzeir as well!
Lineup: Coronel, Tolkin, Nealis, Reyes, Nealis, Amaya, Edelman, Casseres, Harper, Luquinhas, Burke. Subs: Manoel, Vanzeir, Barlow, Fernandez.