One last multi-player batch of Crew alumni reactions to MLS Cup from calls/emails/texts following the 3-0 win over the Seattle Sounders. There will be a pair of longer solo reactions to follow. As always, some of these are condensed versions of longer conversations.
CHAD BARSON (2013-2016)
“I think from the get-go this year, there was just something different about the Crew. Watching even early on, it just seemed like they were extremely balanced and that there was a camaraderie and brotherhood amongst the team. I think Caleb has done an amazing job of getting the guys to buy into his vision of the team and it shows because it looks like they are having fun when they’re playing. You need certain intangible qualities when you’re trying to win a championship and they demonstrated that this year. If you believe you’re a champion and a winner, and you put that into action every single day, the results will come. I think that comes from the whole organization, from Caleb to Tim (Bezbatchenko), Pat (Onstad), Dr. Edwards, and everyone. The type of people in this organization uphold certain values and they bring in players that uphold those same values. But really, it’s one organization from the owners to the fans that come to the stadium. So I’ll just say congratulations to everyone for all the hard work that everyone has put into saving the Crew, keeping them in Columbus, and having a new vision for the club and the city that all ties into winning. It’s a great group effort all around. And I know personally, being from Columbus, I’m just proud to be a part of this city and this organization because it really is a family.”
JASON GAREY (2006-2010)
“They were dominant. Seattle looked almost like they strolled in and thought they were going to win because we were missing a couple guys like Nagbe and Santos. To lose a couple of your top guys basically the day before, the way they were able to pull together was incredible. I mean, it wasn’t even close. Aidan Morris is a beast. He just slid right in there and did his job. And Zelarayan, I wish I had one one-thousandth of that guy’s talent. He’s legit. I was just so happy to see it happen so close to all the #SaveTheCrew stuff. I’m just excited for the city that they saved the team and then won another championship. It’s pretty cool. Playing in Columbus is different than playing for one of those major market teams, and that’s part of the charm of it.”
ANSIL ELCOCK (1997-2001)
“It was a decisive performance. I’ve been looking at the way the play, and they are running non-stop, man. Credit to the players and the coaching staff and the fitness staff. It’s been a while since I have seen a team jell like that. The players look comfortable. They look happy. Columbus is a great city. I think the team did it for the fans. To me, Crew fans are the best fans in the world. They made me feel like I am from Columbus. I still say Columbus is my home away from home, even coming from the Caribbean. So thank you again, fans, for making me and my family feel at home. And thank you Dr. Edwards and family. Coming down to the end here, all the pieces of the puzzle came together. And with all the psychological battles, this coach has to be a genius because it was smooth sailing (in the final.) It’s every player’s dream to win. And every coach’s dream. And they did it. And he did it. That’s a hell of a thing.”
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