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MLS Update: Columbus Crew

Eddie Gaven Andres Mendoza #10 and Eddie Gaven #12 of the Columbus Crew celebrate after Mendoza scored a goal on a penalty kick against FC Dallas at Crew Stadium on April 1, 2011 in Columbus, Ohio.

Last Season Finish: 9th 

Points: 47

Record: 13-13-8

Top Scorer: Andres Mendoza (13)

In: Carlos Mendes, Ethan Finlay

Out: Andres Mendoza, Robbie Rogers, Jeff Cunningham, Emmanuel Ekpo

The Crew always seem to be my mystery team.  For a team that usually contends for top spot in the Eastern Conference they just made the playoffs in the second to last spot, a play-in game against the Colorado Rapids which they lost 1-0.  They have lost their leading goal scorer from 2011, in Andres Mendoza, as well as MLS’s all time leading scorer Jeff Cunningham, speedster Emmanuel Ekpo, and the face of the Columbus Crew for the past few years, Robbie Rogers.  All of these players had come under some kind fire during the season.  Rogers was in and out of form all season long and with rumors circulating about him moving abroad many questioned his loyalty to the club he became a little less popular at his first club.  Mendoza before this year had a terrible scoring record and Cunningham had been virtually ineffective 2 goals in 21 appearances.  Mendes brings depth and experience to the back four.  Finlay is a highly rated striker coming out of the draft, playing for Creighton scoring 3 goals in the NCAA D1 Championship Tournament.  I expect teams like DC United to push hard to take the Crew’s playoff spot this year.  Lets see if Eddie Gaven is up to the task for grinding out results this season.  
RM