Tired Metro beat by Crew, blind referee, 2:1
July 4, 2015

Columbus New York
Finlay 2 Abang
07.04.15 · League

We can't get mad at MLS officiating; everyone knows it's subpar. And yet, every now and again you get one of those games where a referee's decisions affect the result of the match. Today was one of those. Now, we're not saying that Metro was the better team on the night; perhaps, when all is said and done, the 2:1 scoreline was fair. What we're saying that if the game was not refereed by an incompetent buffoon, the result would have likely been different.

Jesse Marsch's lineup rotation saw Kemar Lawrence return and Connor Lade shift to the right for Chris Duvall. Dax McCarty was given the night off. Sal Zizzo and Lloyd Sam were also sent to the bench, as Felipe, Mike Grella, and Bradley Wright-Phillips regained their spots in midfield.

Much can be discussed about the latter's transition from a target striker to a supposed creator; tonight, it worked early on. Just eight minutes in, Anatole Abang got the ball to Wright-Phillips, who returned the favor, springing the youngest on the right side. The Cameroonian beat his man and then placed a terrific shot that tucked in the opposite bottom corner of the net.

Columbus evened the scoring in the 33rd, of, all all things, a goal kick. The clearance was redirected forward by Kei Kamara's head, and dropped to Ethan Finlay. With the Metro defense scratching their head, Finlay easily converted.

Starting at the break, Columbus began to control the match, with Metro's tired legs trying to play catch-up. However, on one of the rare forays upfield, a ball by substitute Sam was controlled by a Columbus defender's arm, which led to an eventual clearance. That happened in the box, yet the referee Juan Guzman decided not to call the penalty.

Soon after, in the 74th, the Kamara ran into open space, and swung the ball to Finlay. Just like that, it was 2:1.

Luis Robles had to make a couple of fantastic saves to keep his team in the game, which brought us to injury time. A spirited run by Lawrence up the left flank saw him step into the box and cross the ball, that was clearly, obviously, redirected by an arm of a Columbus player. And, no, the arm was not in the natural position, it was sticking out. Guzman, probably contemplating his after-game meal, was silent. Marsch was not, earning an ejection for his justified tirade. Metro, tired or not, ran off 2:1 losers, thanks to the referee's help.

Lineup: Robles, Lawrence, Perrinelle, Miazga, Lade, Davis, Martins, Kljestan, Grella, Wright-Phillips, Abang. Subs: Sam, Zizzo.

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