Friday, May 31, 2019


Columbus must not have thought Higuain would go down with an injury because they've never really had a true backup to him, but here the team is. Higuain out with an ACL injury for the rest of the season (and beyond, possibly).

What this means is we'll probably see David Guzman or Eduardo Sosa move up into that role? Guzman is a very... deliberate player. He'd sooner give you a nudge than make a great pass and he offers little to nothing in attack, but he is Porter's "guy" and his vision seems okay. Sosa is more a black box. I'm not terribly sure what to expect out of him. He can be dangerous, but that was in Gregg Berhalter's system.

Last on the list is maybe just stick ol' Ricardo Clark in there. He could hold that role down. As a matter of fact, let's just rank it:

1. Clark
2. Sosa
3. Guzman
x. Santos

Another option for Porter is to just go with a 442 with Guzman and Trapp the two in the middle and Zardes and Mullins up top. The outside backs would have to bomb forward often, so maybe not the best option. How about a 4132 with one of the three guys I mentioned in the middle.

One positive out of this is that the team will have to change radically because of the injury. Something that should have been done a while ago is now forced on them.


This team has kept bits and pieces together through three investment groups. Wil Trapp, Josh Williams, Federico Higuain fall into that group, specifically. All three of them, one could say, make up a sort of moral and cultural center of the team. They've practically seen it all. Also, this is why they probably should have kept Justin Meram - precisely things like this. These guys know how to work through it because they have been through it.

Looking up and down the roster, I don't see anyone else to step up and hold this sucker together. Afful and Mensah maybe? Just nothing there. Perhaps it's an opportunity for someone to step up. Maybe it's just time for Trapp and Williams to take the team by the scruff and see this team through the rest of the season. I'd like to see that actually.


For all intents and purposes, it was probably over a month ago. We may never know why the team jumped the tracks and went careening down a cliff, but it has. Higuain suffering a season-ending just makes the situation much worse (like, falling off a cliff and landing in a pit of snakes). THAT SAID! Despite being a great player, it doesn't mean that someone else can't take hold of the opportunity.

If I'm Trapp or Williams I drive down to the local NBC affiliate or 10TV, pound on the door until someone answers and then shout "I'VE GOT ALOTTA GODDAMN STUFF TO SAY ABOUT HOW WE ARE GOING TO BATTLE THE REST OF THIS SEASON."

Anyhow, darkest before dawn and all of that. Ever wonder where and when that opportunity to become a legend comes from? Well, it's here. Sitting right on your face. I'd like to see intense passion from the guys. Nothing to lose.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Fans Just Waiting for What's Next

Columbus continues her directly downward trajectory after last weekends loss to last place Colorado Rapids. It's hard to describe how bad the situation is for the Crew this year. They are 2nd to last in goals for and have lost 8 of their last 9.

There is something in MLS worse than a bad run of results, however. And that's lack of interest. In my 10 years covering the team, I've never seen it this low. Fans aren't mad, or sad, or anything. There's some hangover from last year, but after picking our heads up after this last embarrassing loss what we see now is an empty void in all directions. Fans not giving a shit also means that casuals are probably completely checked out. As summer approaches, the stadium will look better as far as butts in seats, but it is always that way win, lose or draw.

2.27Los Angeles FC15104136112534
1.92Houston Dynamo127232013723
1.86Seattle Sounders FC147522417726
1.79LA Galaxy148151917225
1.71Philadelphia Union147342415924
1.67DC United157441914525
1.62Minnesota United136342118321
1.58New York City FC124711613319
1.54Atlanta United136251411320
1.50New York Red Bulls146352116521
1.46Real Salt Lake136162021-119
1.40Montreal Impact156361723-621
1.31Toronto FC135262322117
1.31San Jose Earthquakes135262024-417
1.29FC Dallas145361819-118
1.21Chicago Fire144552118317
1.17Portland Timbers124261723-614
1.17Sporting Kansas City123542322114
1.13Vancouver Whitecaps154561619-317
1.07Orlando City144371921-215
1.07Columbus Crew155191422-816
0.87New England Revolution153481532-1713
0.79FC Cincinnati143291125-1411
0.62Colorado Rapids132292032-128

Crew fans just seem to be waiting on what's next. Nobody really seems to care if Caleb Porter should be canned or not. That's probably the best way to look at it because the team's front office likely does not have the resources to fire and hire right now.

Let's call it a sort of "Crew Purgatory." The team sucks, they are deconstructing the roster at the moment and there's no news on the proposed stadium (that the Haslem's claimed would have shovels in the ground, like, now, when they were blowing smoke up #savethecrew butts last year).

Major League Soccer is specifically designed for this sort of run by a team TO NOT happen. Yet it is happening at the most inopportune time for the team. All they had to be is competent. The lowest bar possible for a team coming off two strong seasons and bringing back most of the same players.

What I get is that there is a lot of rebuilding inside the organization. While I don't think there was any sort of purposeful sabotage by Anthony Precourt and friends leaving town, I do feel it's becoming clear that there isn't a lot of urgency by the new group to fill that hole. The Haslem's are likely busy with NFL goings on and the incredible resurgence of the Browns and Dr. Pete Edwards, self-proclaimed steward of the team, seems to be more a crossbreed Frankie Hejduk and Morgan Hughes on social media than anybody in operations.

Crew fans don't know what's next (besides losing). Another misstep in a decade of missteps. Hopefully, that changes soon.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Crew Rolling Goal Diff, 2009-19

Left is the start of 2009 - right is now.

Blue represents rolling 5 game goal difference
Red is 10 games
Orange is 20

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Poster Attic!

Our poster site is still growing and I even added an original Crew illustration. I may add more in the future, we'll see.

For the time being the focus of this little eCommerce site is the following:

1. American Art (Colonial - late 19th century)
2. Early Christian Art (as early as I can find)
3. Original Works (mostly created by myself and my wife)

I have some late 19th century European in there as well, but that is basically where the focus is. The goal is to keep it very simple, tight and all about discovery. If that little voice in your head says "hey that's pretty cool," then I'm happy.

The site is in a kind of beta. If you have any questions, you can email me at

Finally, if you are a little uncomfortable buying from a new, month old site - head on over to our eBay store where you can find over 400+ positive reviews and customer feedback. All the products on Poster Attic are there as well.


Here are a few recent additions to the original art category:

Monday, May 13, 2019

Crew Realities Setting In

Now that the season is about 1/3 of the way in we can take a step back now as the fog of the early season has lifted. In some regards, it is a little more fun than in the past because there are more teams and therefore it is easier to say "well, this team is great and this team sucks" with a little more certainty than when there are fewer teams.

2.25Los Angeles FC128312982127
2.11Houston Dynamo96121710719
2.00Seattle Sounders FC116412013722
1.92Philadelphia Union1272323121123
1.92DC United127231711623
1.83LA Galaxy127141816222
1.70Atlanta United10523128417
1.64New York City FC114611512318
1.60Toronto FC105142217516
1.55FC Dallas115241614217
1.54Montreal Impact136251519-420
1.36Minnesota United114341918115
1.33Chicago Fire124441913616
1.27New York Red Bulls114251614214
1.23Columbus Crew135171218-616
1.18Real Salt Lake114161520-513
1.09Orlando City113351317-412
1.09Vancouver Whitecaps113351114-312
1.00San Jose Earthquakes113261422-811
1.00Portland Timbers103161321-810
1.00Sporting Kansas City102441919010
0.92FC Cincinnati123271018-811
0.85New England Rev.133281431-1711
0.18Colorado Rapids110291630-142

With that, let's get to...


1. LAFC has a really good team. Despite the post-game comments by Crew HC Caleb Porter saying the team is improving and were in it, they were not. LA was on the road, didn't have much trouble scoring the opening goal and sort of just held serve until Columbus rolled over and LA dropped another couple goals on them.

It's pretty clear that Porter came into the season wanted to play a similar style as Gregg Berhalter. And guess what? It worked! A strong start to the season was the result. The problem with what Berhalter did is that it takes constant care and getting buy-in from players. AKA hard work and a fair higher understanding of the game, which comes from experience (particularly outside of MLS). Porter doesn't have that. So once a couple losses came he decided to switch it up and go his own way. More direct and using speed (the signing of MLS speedster vet David Accam) to get behind defenders. To each his own - and Porter has a right to do whatever he wants as coach, but the league has moved on from this type of play. He'll nab one here and there, but it is not sustainable over a season. Meaning; Mid-to-low table finish.

Crew are 2nd to last in goal scoring out of 24 teams. Only Cincy is behind them. Again, Porter seems to be working on some masterplan that apparently takes 6 losses out of 7 games, but there is no excuse, absolutely none, to be this low in the league. Also, look at NYCFC as an example of switching things over. They stayed disciplined - it was a rough start to the season but we see the fruits of that labor now.

Finally, I know I'm beating up on Porter this season. I've never met him personally and I'm sure he's a good guy. The community is small here so if people are voicing displeasure from dark corners of the city he probably hears it. That said - something isn't quite right. Even when at Portland and he won a Cup it was there. This sort of thing manifests itself in public ways. You could see it when he couldn't get the U-23's to the Olympics (losing to Canada and then not being able to beat El Salvador) and then when he purposely went after Bayern in an All-Star Game (so bad Pep refused to shake his hand afterward) and again when he abruptly left Portland with no other options and in the same year he signed a new long term deal with the team.

It's possible he marches to the beat of his own drummer. He's had great success in coaching. At Akron and in Portland, so he knows how to win. Just something doesn't feel right in Columbus. Who knows, maybe he gets a player or two this summer and they turn it around.