The “Columbus Crew” (now named as the Columbus Crew SC) is a professional American soccer club situated in Columbus, Ohio. The team competes in the Major League Soccer (MLS) as one of the 10 charter clubs in the league. In the year 2013, the club faced its new management under the ownership of Anthony Precourt and Precourt Sports Ventures, LLC. The current head coach of the Columbus Crew SC is Gregg Berhalter, his arrival had been formally announced on July 30, 2013 by Anthony Precourt.
Established on June 15, 1994 as one of the Major League Soccer (MLS) ten charter members, the club was wholly owned by Lamar Hunt and his son Clark Hunt, who happened to be one the league’s largest investors at that time. Aside from the Columbus Crew, the two were also the former owners of the Kansas City Wizards in the year 1996.
The team’s first players were the veterans Doctor Khumalo and Brian McBride, under head coach Timo Liekoski during its first season in the league. For the record, the Columbus Crew had sold over 12,000 season ticket deposits after promising the construction of a soccer-specific stadium in Columbus.
On April 13, 1996, the team had played its first season game against the D.C United and won with a 4-0 record. Also, the game was held in the upfront home crowd of Ohio Stadium with an approximate count of 25,266 audiences.
Although the club appeared successful during their first season, the success was cut in the following games, achieving only 5 out of their 21 season games. After the short struggles of the Crew, head coach Timo Liekoski had been replaced by Tom Fitzgerald after the 16-6 start.
Under Tom Fitzgerald, the Crew had slowly regained success and won 9 out of their 10 games in the MLS Eastern Conference, where they finished in the fourth place. In the year 1998, the club had advanced to its very first U.S Open Cup Final, which was held at the Soldier Field in Chicago. The club won the match with a 2 to 1 record, the victory was believed to be contributed by the season’s scoring champion Stern John, who was able to amass a total of 26 goals and 5 assists.
In the year 1999, the club moved to play its home games in the newly built Columbus Crew Stadium, the first soccer stadium in the United States. Up to now, the Crew still plays their home games at the Stadium, the Columbus Crew Stadium has gone through extensive upgrades and renovations after the Precourt Sports Ventures, LLC became the owner of the club in 2013.
The official colors of the club are gold and black. The main jersey of the Crew is predominantly yellow with a black cut, the Crew jersey has been given nicknames as the “canary kit” and “banana kit” by the fans.
Aside from the primary stadium of the Crew, the team has had few Open Cup games that were held in two other stadiums, the Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium (2005) and the FirstEnergy Stadium-Cub Caset Field (2014).