GCGBAG Starting 11: Crewsgiving Bonus Post!!

Crew investor-operator Anthony Precourt was so desperate to be taken seriously in Austin, Texas that he arranged an “exclusive” interview with the American-Statesman this week. It most definitely wasn’t a reaction to columnist Kirk Bohls picking a part PSV’s relocation efforts like Pipa vs. a team of 1st graders. So how did the “boyish-looking, introverted” Precourt’s attempt to rebrand himself as anything other than a bungling failson [and monorail salesman] go? Let’s just say there’s so much gold in Bohls’ follow-up column that it would’ve finished top of the medal count in Pyeonchang. Honestly, we could devote next week’s entire Starting 11 to it but we couldn’t wait that long. So instead, we’ll just give you some of the greatest hits.

Buzzword Soup

Here’s Boyish Anthony on the merits of McKalla Place, which is basically the only city land still on the table for a stadium:

“[McKalla is] midtown. It’s the new downtown.”

WELL ACKCHYUALLY McKalla Place is a toxic chemical dump site that’s about twice as far from downtown Austin, Texas as MAPFRE Stadium is from Broad and High.

“If you were to throw a dart at the point in the metropolitan statistical area that’s the most accessible to the highest number of people in Austin, the Domain (area) is compelling.” 

If you were to put a copy of “Business Studies For Dummies” in a blender, run it on high for 7 minutes, dump everything out on the floor and pick 14 random page scraps, you’d be able to form a more coherent, meaningful sentence. 

 

Queso 

Anthony is  committed to Austin, Texas as evidenced by this authentic, off-the-cuff expression of affinity for local cuisine:

 How sold is he on Austin?

“I have a total weakness for queso,” he said.

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Bold Commitment  

We’re pretty sure Tsung Tzu once said “when you have a weakness, pretend it’s actually a strength.” Exhibit A: 

As evidence of his commitment, Precourt reminded that he announced his intentions to leave Columbus shortly before the Crew’s postseason run — a bold move, indeed. 

Would just any sentient “Entourage” DVD be able to pull off such an amazing display of cunning? It’s a masterclass! Why aren’t you giving him all of your parks, Austin!? 

Oh wait, here’s why:

Still, he’s anything but an open book, and that can foster distrust.

On Columbus being an untenable option, he said, “I prefer this discussion be about Austin. We had success in Columbus, but it hasn’t been sustainable.”

Hmm, wonder what changed?

 ——

Guillermo O’Rourke is real-life, award-winning journalist and commentator. His book, Nine Lies: The Search for Crew Cat’s Killer still needs a publisher. Did you see something Good on line that should be featured in the next Starting 11? Tweet @gcgbag96 and let him know using the hashtag #DonGarberPeeTape.  

GCGBAG Starting 11: Week 1

Ed. Note: We’ve received hundreds of thousands of emails from our dozens of dedicated readers throughout the offseason all asking the same question: “What happened to Guillermo O’Rourke after he escaped the secret MLS black site last year and why didn’t he resume the weekly GCGBAG Power Rankings and can we send him money because he’s so clever and probably very handsome, too?” To the latter point, of course he’ll take your money. Just stop by the GCGBAG tailgate or buy literally anything in the Save The Crew shop. He’ll get the money. 

As to the former, the truth is Guillermo never really escaped the MLS black site. I mean, yes he technically escaped, but his mind remained imprisoned, suppressing a Dark Knowledge. While that Dark Knowledge remains blocked away, we suspect it had something to do with the sinister plot to relocate the Crew that came to light shortly after his escape. Guillermo has undergone months of therapy since and while his mind has yet to fully recover — right now I’d say he’s around “New York Times Op-Ed Columnist” on the mental competency spectrum — the world cannot wait. And so now, against the guidance of every single medical and psychiatric professional we have consulted with in the continental United States, he is back on his bullshit.

---

A Note from Guillermo: We’re taking a fresh, new approach with the GCGBAG Power Rankings this season. And by “fresh” and “new,” we mean “shorter.” So without further ado, here’s this week’s GCGBAG Starting 11, largely based on an accumulation of data. 

 

11.   The Deft Touch of PSV

You, a small-minded rube, probably think it is not a great idea for PSV to release a public statement — the first directly attributed to Investor Operator Anthony Precourt since last fall — reaffirming its commitment to relocating to Austin. In the middle of the annual team-sponsored celebration for Crew season ticket holders. In Columbus.

“Wow, that’s extremely bad optics,”  you might say, you sweet, simple summer child you. 

Here’s why you’re wrong and this announcement is definitely not a ham-fisted desperation play.  

 

10. Major League eSoccer

MLS is doing some thing with Twitch that we can only assume was pitched as a innovative new form of fan engagement that will disrupt the entire professional sports industry. True to form, the Crew front office seized the opportunity and announced they'd hold a FIFA tournament for fans to compete and earn the title of Official Crew Gamer. LOL of course that didn't happen. Instead, out of the blue, we get: 

 Let's hear it for SKaMzZ everyone!

Let's hear it for SKaMzZ everyone!

Look, we’re sure SKaMzZ is a great guy and a great gamer. All we're saying is Rick 'n Rick deserved a shot. They would've Rick rolled over the competition.  

 

9. SANCH

SANCH.png

You’re damn right!

What's that!? Keep going!? 

🎶Who is the man that can nutmeg through any man? (SANCH!) Can you dig it?

Who's the cat that’s quick to switch and danger all about the pitch? (SANCH!) Right on!

They say this cat Sanch is a bad motha - (SHUT YOUR MOUTH!) -- But I'm talkin' 'bout Sanch (THEN WE CAN DIG IT!)

He's a complicated man, but no one understands him like Berhalter (PEDRO SANCH!)🎶

 

8. TROPHIES!  

A certain World’s Greatest Team just shit-pumped the competition --  winning all three games with a +5 goal differential -- to capture its second straight Charleston Challenge Cup. That’s right, the Crew's one step on the way to the  Sextuple (heh, nice). For the uninitiated, that’s winning the Charleston Challenge Cup, Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, MLS Supporters’ Shield, MLS Cup and the Trillium Cup, and saving the Crew, for which there will most definitely be a trophy presentation ceremony, in the same year.

 

7.  Gregg Berhalter

Say what you will about his tactics or his tinkering with said tactics, but one thing’s for sure: Gregg can wear the hell out of a sweater. He also deserves credit for holding himself accountable to supporters and, of course, for his shared appreciation of the finer things — namely Josh Williams. 

 

6. Cristian Martinez

The 20-year-old Panamanian has been the breakout star of the preseason, and not just because he chipped Brad Guzan from roughly a 800 yards out. Regular minutes have been hard to come by in his first two seasons, but he’s put in the work, brought that S-Cell count up and is ready to go all Super Saiyan on the league. 

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5. Steven Lenhart   

The Massive Champion spoke at length with Massive Historian Steve Sirk (who you can support here) last week. It’s a colorful, wiiiiiiide-ranging interview chock full of quintessential insights like “playing against Chad Marshall was like playing against a Transformer” and it’s all outstanding. Of course, the Monocled One asked about Columbus supporters and Stevie did not disappoint.

 “I thought they were awesome,” he says. “I thought they were the best fans in the world. They are so overly passionate. It’s like, ‘Don’t you care about your kids? Do you guys have families?’ I loved interacting with the fans. It was great. They knew more than I did, that’s for sure.”

Read "Love and Elbows with Steven Lenhart." 

 

4.  Bizness Metricks

Crew Director of Business Operations Andy Logname used the annual Supporters Summit to assure everyone he’s not inept. It is beyond us how the word “inept” could even creep into anyone’s vocabulary when talking about a dude whose on-the-job performance has been described as “like the captain of the Titanic lecturing passengers about how to avoid icebergs as the ship is sinking and the rich guy is escaping with all the lifeboats -- hoping to convince his rescuers to build him a new, more ‘vibrant’ Titanic.”

Anyway, Lonkhorn even went as far as to say that team marketing has increased significantly over the past few years. By no fault of their own, marketing is the only area where the “parallel paths” logic actually holds true. While Lagnaff and the Crew front office continue to invest in that new, low-visibility, anti-marketing marketing that’s so “in” with the kids right now, #SaveTheCrew has gathered more than 300 business allies and launched its own #FillTheFre ticket sales drive. How do you like dem metricks?

 

3.  Gaston Sauro

We said it before and we'll say it again: GASTON SAURO IS A TREASURE AND WE MUST PROTECT HIM AT ANY COST!

 

2.  The Nordecke Membership

We don't have to tell you that the Greater Columbus Golden Boys and Girls are the 2008 Columbus Crew of Columbus Crew supporters groups or that being able to identify yourself as a member provides more fulfillment than, frankly, anything else in your life. We feel the same way, but, we're also big fans of our fellow supporters groups. So, after a convening of Nordecke Leadership, we have decided to join with our brothers- and sisters-in-arms Crew Union, Hudson Street Hooligans, La Turbina Amarilla and Murderers' Row under one flag. Well of course we'll still have the GCGBAG flag, what we're talking about is just one Nordecke membership. 

Membership items include the Member Scarf, symbolizing the unity of the 5 groups, a Nordecke car magnet, and membership card for discounts. Membership is $20. All dues go to supply funds for tailgates, TIFO, and Away Trips to support the Black and Gold.
Memberships can be purchased HERE

We like the look of everything down there a lot:

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Get your membership over at the Nordecke Shop now. 

 

1.  #SaveTheCrew

While PSV was busy texting “u up?” to Butler Shores Tuesday, the Ohio Senate Government Oversight and Reform Committee voted in favor of a resolution to keep the Crew in Columbus (mad props to Jo Rodgers!). Then that bad boy went out on the Senate floor Wednesday, where it also received (drumroll) unanimous support. #SaveTheCrew is basically the only bipartisan issue in the state. That’s something any professional sports league commissioner and/or team investor operator should keep in mind when wondering how serious lawmakers are about, you know, enforcing laws on the books. But enough about ORC 9.67, let’s talk more about #SaveTheCrew. Did we mention the Community Kit reveal party on the Night Before Crewsmas Eve? Or about teaming up to support our friends at Community Refugee and Immigration Services?  

Hell yeah guys. We can't wait to get back to Upping The Lads. 

 

Guillermo O’Rourke is real-life, award-winning journalist and commentator. His book, Nine Lies: The Search for Crew Cat’s Killer still needs a publisher. Did you see something Good on line that should be featured in the next Starting 11? Tweet @gcgbag96 and let him know using the hashtag #DonGarberPeeTape. 

 

Power Rankings: Guillermo's Back Post All-Star Break

(Ed. Note: We've been hit with a deluge of emails, phone calls, tweets and interpretive dances over the past few months, all asking the same question: "What happened to the GCGBAG Power Rankings and is Guillermo O'Rourke as handsome and witty in person as he comes across in writing and, if so, is he single and, if so, do you think I've got a chance?" To the latter inquiries, the answer has been and remains: "No, he is even more handsome and witty in person, but you don't have a chance because he's married to the game." However, we've had to remain silent on the former inquiry because, as we have learned and can now share publicly, he had been abducted and forcibly detained at what appears to have been a MLS black site.

We reported Mr. O'Rourke as missing on May 6 when he did not show up for the pregame tailgate at MAPFRE Stadium ahead of the match with New England. Law enforcement opened a formal investigation but turned up no leads and we had all but given up hope until we received word he had been discovered this past Sunday, August 6 near Bridgeview, Ill. A couple had called local authorities to report a disoriented man in nothing but boxers who had stumbled out of the woods in their backyard straight into the middle of their son's birthday party. When they asked the man who he was or if he needed help, "he just kept repeating: 'at the soccer Don loves me and knows what's best for me' -- whatever that means." If not for a 7-year-old at the party in a Bastian Schweinsteiger jersey [whom Mr. O'Rourke instinctively RKO'd; the parents have graciously agreed not to press charges], our special guy might have never have been jolted out of this trauma-induced state.

We now know that over 90-plus days in captivity, ex-Blackwater agents, under orders that could only have been approved by highest levels of MLS, attempted to coerce Mr. O'Rourke into disclosing the identities of anonymous league sources responsible for leaking many of the explosive revaluations that have been exclusively reported in this space. Despite their "enhanced" interrogation techniques, which included sleep deprivation, forced ingestion of a "shit-ton" of psychotropic-hallucinogenic drugs and being subjected to the tortuous 2016 MLS Cup Final on a loop for 72 straight hours, our intrepid reporter refused to reveal his sources.

Although authorities were able to retrace Mr. O'Rourke's trail to find the underground bunker where he was believed to have been held, the site was deserted by the time they arrived and most of the evidence scrubbed. We are unable to comment further as the investigation is ongoing, other than to say we are so grateful to have Mr. O'Rourke returned to his friends and family. And now, against the advice of six different medical professionals, he's catching up on all his bullshit.

Power Rankings, largely based on an accumulation of data. 

22. MLS All-Star Team

Four Chicago (sic) Fire players. Three each from Dallas, Toronto and Atlanta (Parkhurst!?). Oh, and we can't forget "Commissioner's Pick" Dom Dwyer -- you know, the guy with three fewer goals AND four fewer assists than Justin Meram. Christ, Don. How in the hell do you expect to beat the team with the "Portuguese Meram" without the original Iraqi Ronaldo? 

21. Rafa "Kingpin" Marquez

Rafa Marquez has denied allegations about being involved with Flores Hernandez's drug trafficking organization. However, the US Department of the Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control is confident enough in their investigation to have sanctioned the former New York Energy Drink Star and Mexican International footballer anyway. No bueno, bro.

20. The Worst 20 Seconds In Soccer History

19. MOTHER F*%$IN' TIGER CUBS

18. Chris Penso

In a show a rare ingenuity from MLS officials, Chris Penso used his magic spray to draw a magic line that mysteriously held off the horde of complaining players so that he could have a private conversation with his sideline official. His resourcefulness would be the trait that makes him the unlikely hero for the protagonists in a campy horror film about zombie soccer players.

17. Olympic Diving Team

As the Olympic Diving trials approach for the upcoming Olympics, we've been keeping an eye out for talent around the world. Our scouts informed us that Spaniard Jordi Alba is the one to beat this year, after he recently nailed one of the most impressive dives in recent history:

16. GCGBAG Fantasy

Team Los Angeles Comedian is atop the GCGBAG MLS Fantasy League after last week, with 1,817 points. 

Speaking of fantasy, in case you don't have enough fantasies in your life, we'll also be running a GCGBAG Premier League Fantasy Team through the Fantasy iTeam app. The PIN to join the league is 115735.

15. Josh Sargent

With goals like this and his most recent strike (below) at the U-20 World Cup, the 17 year old (along with Zach Steffen) just might be the future of the USMNT.

14. New and Improved Soccering-Ability-Enhancing Genome Thereapy... For Kids!

Apparently a Miami-based company claims they can sequence your child's genome to make them become the ultimate soccer star!

13. Bourussia Muchengladbort

12. First Pitch Pipa

Pipa tossed an exquisite first pitch in Cincinnati recently; though we're not concerned about him pulling a Tim Tebow and heading to the minors anytime soon.

11. Reasonable Soccer Parents

10. One for the Future

Lights out. 👟🕯💨 🙌 TAG @leomessi @cristiano 🙌 Licensed by Jukin Media

A post shared by Korbin Jackson (@korbin_jackson) on

Crew SC better put him on the discovery list if he's dropping passes on top of candlesticks with mini soccer balls at this age.

9. The Lads (↗️)

Some GCGBAGs including Rick & Rick hit the road to cheer on the boys in Salt Lake and San Jose. You can find some photos of their wee-little-shenanigans on Instagram, Facebook, and the Twittersphere.

#staygolden

A post shared by GCGBAG (@gcgbag) on

8. Pipa Megs

As Rick & Rick might say... ANKLES! ANKLES ON 'EM!

7. Brad's Stuvers

6. Drogba Thunderstrike

Drogba's gonna Drogba.

5. West Side Casuals

We've devoted a good chunk of this space to talking up the GCGBAGs and other Nordecke supporters' groups -- and rightfully so. But in this week's installment of the "Hunt for the Golden Crewzer," we hear from a member the #roughest supporters' group in MAPFRE Stadium (along with some team spin Crew SC's corporate celebrity fan, whom we were contractually obligated to include).

4. Ola Volleys

Unfortunately, I was held in captivity for months and wasn't able to enjoy Ola's sublime volleys, to which you all were treated. So we might as well re-live them now:

3. ACES

Based ACES earned the three spot this week, as conductor of the cash splashin', into-the-Lord-Guillermo-Sun, Crewzers SC hype train, for his signing of the newest attacking piece of Crew SC...

2. Pedro Santos!!!!

I'll just leave this here:

1. Columbus Crew SC

The Black & Gold take the top spot this week for taking the league by storm with their business acumen, breaking the club record for largest transfer fee on a new DP, and of course, for the Josh Williams and Justin Meram bromance moments.

Power Rankings: Week 9

By Guillermo O'Rourke

Power Rankings, largely based on an accumulation of data.

22. DaxStreet Boys

Burn. Them. All. 

21. Kei Kamara's Role With New England

We're not still [as] sour about the way stuff went down with Kei [as some of the fanbase]. We're just stating an objective fact: Kei Kamara's has been a heart-shaped-hands-shaped peg in the round hole since arriving in New England.

The lesser Kamara won't have the chance to prove anything otherwise Saturday because he's with his wife awaiting the birth of their second child. How convenient! 

20. New England Revolution  

Uh, where to start? How about their owners, Jonathan and (that) Robert Kraft, who by several accounts is the worst owner in MLS, has secret casino holdings, wants to watch the world burn and generally sucks. Yep, that'll do for now. 

19. #Parkhursting

Look, we don't hold any animosity for the former Crew SC captain. He's just... well, we'll just say, Atlanta United fans, we know what you're going through

18. The Street Megger

Savage.

17. Emre Can

Savage.

16. Fightin' Snowmen

Also savage. Like, we might have to think of a new schtick because the Fightin' Snowmen are running away with the GCGBAG Fantasy League. 

15. The 2017 Crew SC Gear Sale

Oh look, if it isn't our official Corporate Celebrity Fan trying to tell us how to deal with the annual Crew gear sale, like, three weeks after it happened.

This guy? Can you believe him? 

14.  Outbreak SC

If you're looking for a team aside from Crew SC to follow in the U.S. Open Cup, look no further then Outbreak SC. Why? 1) They're a team of 30-something-year-old SoCal bros playing against professionals. 2) Well, just take it from forward Jason Cambell:

“We don’t train, we don’t talk about training, we just show up and hope the last six days of the week didn’t ruin our fitness too much.”

13.  Jack Ryan

Crew SC have been linked with Aberdeen captain Ryan Jack for a week or so now, and he has even reportedly been urged to follow his "American Dream" to Columbus. We don't put much stock in transfer rumors, but it did get us thinking... about "Patriot Games." 

12. Pittsburgh Riverhounds

Crew SC's kinda farm team delivered last week with a 30-yard thunderstrike (courtesy of Victor Souto):

But wait, the digital media team followed up with this gem, which is almost better:

Prettay, prettay, prettay campy. These guys are alright. Well, for Pittsburgh. 

11.  Golden Boy of the Week

 You can't un-see it.

10. Philadelphia Union 

It's hard to hate on the Union when they're putting out A+ content like that and are otherwise comically inept

9. Sporting-Event Propsals

On the whole, we agree with the consensus that you shouldn't subject a captive audience of thousands of strangers, who don't know and frankly don't care about your relationship, to sit through a contrived, awkward display of your personal commitment on the Jumbotron. That being said, if there is a Right Way to do a sporting-event proposal, Our Dude Ryan pulled it off last weekend at the MEGATailgate.

Mazel tov! 

8. Dinosaurs and Gluten

Translation: ALL THE GOOD STUFF THIS WAY!! 

7. May the 4th

Sorry NERDS *cough* Vancouver, Houston and especially New England *cough* this has nothing to do Star Wars so you can put your light sabers right back in your pants. No, May the 4th is special because it was on this day in 1973 that Greatest That Ever Was Or Will Be came into being. We're writing, of course, about our God-King Guillermo "el terrible" Barros Schelotto. We certainly understand why LAFC is interested in the MASSIVE CHAMPION and Boca Juniors manager, but -- and we mean this sincerely John Thorrington -- if you sign him, we hope that the person you cherish most in this world pushes you off whatever the tallest building in Los Angeles is...

Wow. Sorry fam, that got a little dark, but needed to be said. Anyway, here are a bunch of Tweets and videos to commemorate this MASSIVE occasion.

6. #BuildThatStadium

Also featured in this week's Drunken Crewzer Postgame Show: a challenge to one William Alexander Trapp. 

5. Alex Crognale

CROG NAIL picked up some major Internet hardware earlier this week when he was name the SBI MLS Rookie of the Month for April. We imagine a lot of teams are envious of the options Greggggggg will have at centerback if everyone could get healthy at once. 

4. #DosHiguains

No sir it wasn't. And that's not even including Pipa's All-World Dummy last weekend. 

3. Steven Lenhart

We pour one out for The Cabbage Patch Assassin Steven Lenhart, another MASSIVE CHAMPION, who his hanging up the boots after an 11-year professional career. Lenhart was a rookie on that glorious 2008 team and cemented his place in Crew lore when he scored in stoppage-time to secure a 1-1 draw for Columbus in the opening away leg of of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Kansas City Wizards (they don't want you to remember they were the Wizards).

In addition to the 2008 Cup, Lenhart also nabbed a pair of Supporters' Shields and carved a niche as MLS's premier super sub over three seasons in Columbus before being dealt to San Jose on the eve of the 2011 draft [for a pick that turned out to be Justin Meram ¯\_(ツ)_/¯]. He went on to play six seasons in San Jose, but had his career derailed after a string of concussions (fuck concussions). He had recently signed with the Japanese side FC Iambari. 

2. Prince Kendrick Afful

As we bid farewell to one MASSIVE CHAMPION -- but seriously, Steven, if you're ever in town hit, us up -- we welcome a FUTURE MASSIVE CHAMPION, King Harrison's newborn son Prince Kendrick Afful (yesssssssss!).

We are so beyond stoked for the Royal Family! Seriously. Like anyone who knows us knows we love (in no particular order): Prince, Harrison Afful and Kendrick Lamar.  

1. Columbus Crew SC

The rains blessed MAPFRE Stadium a little too early last weekend. New England may have tried to co-opt "The Battle Hymn of the Nordecke" but on Saturday, The World's Greatest Team will no doubt reaffirm why they are Toto's Favored Team.  

Power Rankings: Week 8

By Guillermo O'Rourke

Power Rankings, largely based on an accumulation of data. 

22. Cuauhtemoc Blanco

How many of you would be surprised to learn that the former Chicago Fire and Mexican national team striker was elected mayor of the town of Cuernavaca?

*All hands go up* 

How many of you would be surprised to learn that Blanco, who more or less bribed a referee during a 2009 match vs. Columbus, has been "dogged by allegations of corruption since he was elected last year" and was recently accused of ordering a hit at a local fair earlier this month?

*No hands go up* 

Fuck off, Blanco. Sincerely.

21. ESPN  

The World Wide Leader in Live Sports and Otherwise Garbage Broadcast Content isn't adapting well to the new media landscape -- what with all the kids and their cord cutting. So what's the solution that John Skipper and company came up with to appease his Disney overlords? Laying off around 100 actual journalists, including soccer writers Doug McIntyreDavid Hirshey and Mike Goodman. We'll be pouring some out for our boys at the tailgate Saturday. 

20. New York City Football Club

What's there to say about NYCFC and its fly-in-the-face-of-everything-Don-Garber-purports-the-MLS-to-be-about franchise model that hasn't already been said about its sugar daddy Manchester City? What's there to say about their seat-stealing, cop-attacking, neo-fascist ULTRAZ that hasn't already been said in this space or the Brotherly Game's NYCFC visitor's guide

19. Red Bull Arena

Both Crew SC midfielder Artur and centerback Alex Crognale were visciously attacked by the Harrison, N.J. Turf Monster and that played no small role in the ex-Metrostars' surprise victory last Saturday. Though the initial prognosis for The Crog suggests he could return this weekend, the Brazilian prodigy was not so lucky (more on that later).

18. Newcastle United

The Toon Army has run the gamut of emotions over the last several days, from jubilant highs after clinching promotion straight back to the Premier League Monday; to fatalist lows after Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs -- basically the English IRS -- raided the club over fraud charges, which could threaten said promotion; to naive optimism that maybe this latest boondoggle could force sack-of-shite owner Mike Ashley to finally sell the club; to cynical acceptance that, at best, the club's managing director, large adult son Lee Charnley, could go to the clinker but nothing is really go to change (at least for the better) because it's Newcastle. 

17. FaceApp

It's the fun new mobile phone application that's all the rage with your over-sharing aunt or high school classmate. We decided to take it for a spin, too! 

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Haunting, really. 

16. FayMountaineer

Yes, Fightin' Snowmen are still at the top of the GCGBAG Fantasy Table, but these are  power rankings after all. FayMountaineer, led by manager Ronald Martin, went HAM last week with 110 points continuing its assault up the table and now sits in second place, a mere 16 points back of the leaders. 

15. Kids Instagramming on Daniele De Rossi's Lawn

14. Kekuta Manneh Conspiracy Theories

The Massive Report's Patrick Murphy has no time for your tin-foil hat bat-shit crazy theories about why Kekuta Manneh, who was acquired nearly four weeks ago, has yet to make an appearance for The Yellow Soccer Team. Meanwhile, MLSSoccer.com's Andrew King is content stirring the pot (read: transcribing quotes). Who's right? We have no idea.  We're just going to leave this here instead.

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13.  MLSFemale.com

On behalf of all the Golden Boys and Girls, we'd like to welcome Hillary, who's going to be covering the Crew SC beat for MLSFemale.com. Here's her first post, which gave us all the feels. 

12. Dom Leroux-Dwyer on Raw

Thank you, Mr. Sydney Leroux, for assuming the league's WWE fan mantle in Steve Clark's absence. 

11. The Lads (⤵️)

Where else did you expect to find the lads after last weekend's disappointment? Not to worry, though. We've got some major upping in store for Saturday. Major upping. 

10. C.R.E.A.M. 

The MLS Players' Union released errybody's salaries earlier this week. Massive Report broke down who's overpaid and underpaid for Crew SC. We decided to do some, uh, different research. Niiiiice base salaries, Kortne Ford,  Kianz Froese, Jordan Hamilton, Daigo Kobayashi, Jalen Robinson and London Woodberry. You know what we're talking about.

9. Transfer Talk

With the totally-binding "primary" transfer window "slams" shut May 8, so naturally, the rumors are a flying. There are reports Crew SC could be in negotiations with Brazilian playmaker Rafael Longuine -- a potential long-term replacement for Pipa -- while Chicharito might be poised to sign with the new LA team. Meanwhile, Orlando City striker Cyle Larin could be on his way out after being linked with approximately every team in Europe. MLSSoccer.com keeps a nice running tab

8. Chicago Fire Self-Owns

There are so many layers of ownage here we could devote a whole post to breaking it all down. The most obvious one, though: these Chicago Fire "fans" completely missed out on getting a picture with Crew legend Eric Gehrig. 

7. CHICKEN

We have made no secrets of our general apathy for the contrived content that MLSSoccer.com puts out, but as chicken devotees, we can't deny that the Match Day Chicken Bucket Challenge is Good. 

6.  #GetWellArtur

Artur underwent surgery earlier this week to fix his broken wrist and is, but for the grace of Guillermo, only expected to miss three games or so. Crew SC supporters (and mascots) are wishing the young Brazilian a speedy recovery via the aforementioned hashtag. 

5.  Ray Hudson

We have long held that beIN Sports' loquacious Englishman is unquestionably the best color commentator in world soccer [and probably the world in general]. But Hudson, who's never been shy about professing his love of the "magisterial" Lionel Messi, took things to a new level during the El Classico last weekend. 

As much joy as we got from listening to Hudson gush over the "Medicine Man's" stoppage time heroics, we were even more delighted by Messi's celebration.

4. Cinerator

Need proof Cinerator Hot Cinnamon Whiskey serves up the heat like no other? How about 91.1 proof? That's real strength from a smooth whiskey that brings the heat that will kick your glass. But let us worry about being the best. That'll leave you time to wonder how a shot with such a hot cinnamon taste goes down so damn smooth...

Disclaimer: Cinerator Hot Cinnamon Whiskey does not endorse and is in no way associated with the latest edition of GCGBAG's Hunt for The Golden Crewzer... yet! 

3.  Zack Steffen

The rookie keeper/Terminator was about the only bright spot for Crew SC last Saturday in Jersey. He made a career-high five saves and all but cemented his spot on the 2018 US World Cup squad. Plus, he follows some A+ Twitter accounts.

2. That Time Our Scoreboard Caught On Fire

Remember that? Good times.

1.  Columbus Crew SC

Sure, The World's Greatest Team failed to capture all three (or any) points last weekend in Jersey. OK, maybe the club's depth is getting tested a little bit earlier than we had hoped. Hell, we'll even concede that the Black & Gold are displaying some worrying trends on the road. But Saturday is the start of three straight games within the friendly confines of the Tiny Demon Fortress, where said World's Greatest Team is UNDEFEATED this season. Crew SC should have no trouble reclaiming their rightful seat atop the Eastern Conference this weekend.