The Columbus Crew lost 3-0 to Newcastle United at Crew Stadium in front of 11,224 fans on Tuesday night in an friendly match. The Crew only had one shot on goal during the game, but they were also a man down for the entire second half after goalie Andy Gruenebaum was given a red card in the 45th minute.
Shola Amoebi scored the first goal for the Toon Army in the 9th minute. Emmanuel Ekpo played a back pass between Kevin Burns and Eric Gehrig. Burns got to the ball first and he took one touch back towards the Crew goal. However, Amoebi muscled him off the ball, and he finished nicely.
Right before half time, Crew goalie Andy Gruenebaum came out of the box as Newcastle forward Demba Ba was through on goal. Gruenebaum slid, and he accidentally handled the ball as he knocked it away. Referee Michael Kennedy thought the offense was worthy enough of a red card, and Gruenebaum was sent off. Emergency goalie Chris Konopka was subbed in for the second half. Konopka was training with the Crew during preseason, and he was brought in for the Newcastle game as a backup. Crew goalies William Hesmer and Alex Riggs are both currently injured.
Fabricio Colocinni doubled the lead for the Magpies in the 53rd minute. Off a Newcastle corner kick, the loose ball fell to Colocinni, and he took one controlling touch before he rifled the ball into the back of the net with his left foot.
Haris Vukcic scored the third and final goal for Newcastle in stoppage time. Ba passed to Vukcic at the top left side of the box. Vukcic cut back inside, and his bending shot found the top right corner of the goal, nicking off the post on its way in.
The friendly match was not televised, but Crew play-by-play radio announcer Neil Sika called the game for the Crew’s website. Newcastle fans from all over must have tuned in to listen to the game. By the end of the night, they all loved Sika’s unique style so much, a Facebook page was created: Neil Sika, The legend who commentated on Newcastle vs The Crew. The page has almost 400 likes in less than 24 hours.
Columbus: Gruenebaum (Konopka 45th), Miranda (Gardner 45th), Marshall (James 45th), Gehrig (Sippola 86th), Francis (Veeder 45th), Ekpo (Gaven 45th, Horton 85th), Burns (Prim 75th), Grossman (Rusmir 60th), Anor (Rogers 45th, Renteria (Meram, 45th), Heinemann
Newcastle: Harper, Coloccini (Dummett 54th), Enrique, Taylor, Tavernier, Tote (Smith 62nd), Gosling, Gutierrez (Abeld 85th), Marveaux (Vukcic 76th), Amoebi (Best 75th), Ba.