Columbus Crew stay hot ahead of Champions Cup final: "The approach doesn't change"


The Columbus Crew picked a great time to get hot.

Heading into next week's Concacaf Champions Cup final against Pachuca, Wilfried Nancy's side made it three straight wins (all on the road) Saturday night thanks to a 2-0 victory at Orlando City SC behind a Diego Rossi brace.

The result improved the Crew to 6W-2L-6D, moving them into the top four in the Eastern Conference. More importantly, it keeps morale high as they prepare to play for international glory.

"Winning the last three games on the road has been huge for us and definitely provides a good bit of momentum going into another tough road match where the final's on the line," goalkeeper Patrick Schulte said postmatch. "It's definitely good to have three wins behind your name going into that game, but we also know it's a final and the last three games don't matter. So we just gotta get up and get ready for it just like any other game."

After taking care of business in Orlando, the Crew shift their attention to Pachuca and arguably the biggest match in club history. On June 1 at Estadio Hidalgo, Columbus will look to become just the second MLS club (after Seattle Sounders FC) to win the modern iteration of CCC and qualify for the 2025 FIFA Club World Cup.

"It was a good exercise for the players, obviously, when we come here, the weather, the opposition and everything. It was good for the players to recognize when we have to adjust, when we attack or to defend," said Nancy. "But as you know, Pachuca is going to be something different... Let's rest and prepare a good week. Enjoy this week and be ready for this game."

Rossi steps up

Saturday's win also extended Rossi's scoring streak. With his brace, the Uruguayan international made it three straight games with a goal and 4g/2a over his last four matches.

Rossi's red-hot moment comes as the Crew have rested star striker Cucho Hernández the past three matches due to a back injury, with the hope of having the Colombian international available for the final.

"We continue to show that our approach remains the same no matter who we are facing on the field," said Rossi, ready for whatever awaits next week in Mexico. "We play the same way, or at least we try to. The players we’re currently missing are important, but the approach doesn’t change.”