COLUMBUS, Ohio – The 2022 Columbus Crew schedule was released Wednesday, December 15th. This coming year’s slate of games includes 34 total matches spanning a 9 month period. It will be the first full season at Lower.com Field and it will, hopefully, be augmented by some post-season action.
Which games on the Columbus Crew 2022 schedule has Caleb Porter circled multiple times?
The Crew’s head coach, Caleb Porter, has developed a bit of a personal quirk by measuring the importance of a game by how many times he has circled the date on his calendar.
Time to circle some dates 😉 pic.twitter.com/1NKlaiB57J
— The Crew (@ColumbusCrew) December 15, 2021
This past season, prior to the match against Austin, Caleb mentioned that he knew how important the game was to the fans, and circled the game twice when the match list was released.
Then, later in the summer before the home game against Cincinnati, Caleb said, he circled this matchup a whopping three times! That’s a lot of marker for a single date.
So, let us take a look at the upcoming season and try our hand at what games Coach Porter has already circled now that he has time to deliberate the magnitude of the MLS season.
Vancouver February 26th at Lower.com Field
The home opener and first game of the year will certainly warrant multiple circles on Caleb’s schedule.
There will be plenty of talking points for fans and pundits to hammer out as the game draws near. Articles and Reddit posts alike will be drafted breaking down the “new team” after stalwarts like Harrison Afful have left the squad.
— The Crew (@ColumbusCrew) December 18, 2021
I anticipate we will hear the gaffer expound on how important a hot start will be in order to put 2021 in the rearview mirror.
2022 will not have any CONCACAF Champions league games occurring before the official start of the MLS season. So this cold and early game will be our first taste of legitimate Crew soccer.
I can’t wait, and neither can Caleb Porter: Two Circles!
Los Angeles Football Club, May 21st Lower.com Field
The first nationally televised game at home will definitely get the coaching staff’s attention. A late May matchup with a perineal playoff contender will provide an edge of excitement to the late spring stage of the year.
This fixture will take place after two straight road games against the New England Revolution and the reigning MLS Cup Champion New York Football Club. I apologize for being a pessimist in the offseason, but considering the Crew’s road record, I cannot imagine those games will go well. Here’s to hoping I’m wrong.
Caleb and the boys will hope the friendly confines of Lower.com Field and enthusiastic cheers from the Nordecke will be just what the doctor ordered after a rough two-week road stretch.
With a national audience watching Columbus will not want to disappoint: Two Circles!
Hell is Real July 17th & August 27th Lower.com and TQL Stadium
These two are a bit self-explanatory, but it is the off-season and I’m kind of bored, so allow me to explain a little further.
This matchup is starting to actually feel like a rivalry. Back in 2019, both teams were less than impressive. Fans were begging for the matchup to deliver sparks. While Crew fans can rewatch the road match in full, fondly on Youtube, the series lacks a bit of edge.
The following season was marred by Covid and the fact that one of the matchups was played during MLS Is Back. The four-nothing domination of The Crew and the first free-kick goal from Lucas Zelarayán was special enough for most Crew fans to forget FCC actually beat Columbus later that year. Winning the MLS Cup also didn’t hurt.
Last year though? Last year had some spice. A two-goal comeback down a man on the road and a late brace at home by Miguel Berry cemented Columbus as the superior team of Ohio.
— The Crew (@ColumbusCrew) July 10, 2021
Caleb won’t want to give new Cincinnati Coach Pat Noonan any breaks: Three Circles!
Bonus Take: Miguel Berry will somehow score incredibly important goals in both games rising the ranks of hated individuals in Cincinnati sports history. Somewhere ahead of Al Leiter, but still behind Joey Porter.
Portland, September 18th Lower.com Field
A fall home match on National TV that will most likely have playoff implications. That’s sure to get the blood pumping.
I’m already fired up anytime Columbus plays Portland. While it isn’t a Heiniken MLS Rivalry week matchup (shout out San Jose) the ghost of 2015 still lingers in the corners of many Crew Fandoms.
Caleb will have a little more fire going against the team he once coached: Four Circles!!!
Discord surrounding a schedule is inherently short-sighted. We don’t even know what the starting eleven looks like yet. And if 2021 is a lesson in anticipation, we really do not know how any of this will shake out.
Until the new uniform drops or Bez signs some new wingers, there just isn’t enough to talk about with friends or family around the holidays.
So, from my house to yours–cheers and go Crew!