Player and Coach Statements

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Brad Evans, MLS player

“How do fans go about buying/owning a club? Asking for my #SaveTheCrew faithful.”

Alejandro Moreno, former MLS player, current ESPN broadcaster

“Feel very strongly about my scarf choice for a cold and windy #MLSCup 4et @espn #SaveTheCrew”

“You have to respect your history. You have to respect your roots. You’ve got to know where you came from.”

"This tells an important part of the story. "Respect Your Roots" Today's #MLS , with all its growth & expansion success, is standing on the foundation laid in part by the sacrifices & struggles of the early days. Turning your back on your own history is a mistake! #SavetheCrew"

"MLS should be trying to keep one of its original franchises where it belongs, instead can't help but feel like the league is trying to find every reason to defend a potential move! Nonsense. #SavetheCrew"

Matt Lampson, MLS player

“Columbus was my home. The Crew gave me my 1st opportunity to play the game that I love for a living. They are a pillar of #MLS #SaveTheCrew”

Justin Meram, MLS Player

‘My ‘thank god’ comment was a sarcastic joke about being a Michigan man in Ohio. And I love Columbus & always will. Never spoke bad about the club esp the fans, coaches and my brothers I played with. I just could never support an owner moving the team. One love Cbus #SaveTheCrew’”

Eric Gehrig, MLS Coach

“They proved last night they're more than capable of keeping what is theirs. Well done Columbus, the city that gave me a chance. #SaveTheCrew”

Federico Higuain, MLS Player

“It's hard to talk about this because I like the city, because I love the club, because I’m proud to be part of this club, because I like the fans - the relationship is reciprocal, so it’s very hard.”

"It's hard, it's hard. To me, it's very difficult to understand, because if this happened in Argentina, maybe people die. Someone could die, you know?”

"I really like to play for this club. I like the city. I like everything in Columbus."

Josh Williams, MLS Player

"I was a fan first. I don't want the team to go anywhere, I think I've made that clear before.”

"It's a rivalry [Columbus Crew vs FC Cincinnati] I hope will be around for a long time."

Brian McBride, former MLS and USMNT Player

“@DMcB20 and I got our @HOMAGE #BeMassive shirts. I’ll be Wearing mine tomorrow. #SaveTheCrew”

"Would’ve loved to be at the #SaveTheCrew Premiere event tonight. Gonna miss seeing everyone!! Have a blast all.

"Love to see my local paper (@dailyherald) bringing attention to a topic so close to my heart and everyone trying to #SaveTheCrew"

Dante Washington, former MLS and USMNT Player

What's his biggest beef with the way the proposed relocation has gone down? "I guess the narrative of the business metrics that continue to be discredited really bothers me."

Former Crew player Dante Washington told WCMH that he hopes the rally tells Precourt to think “three times, four and times, really hard about what he’s trying to do.”

"Those thinking there isn’t enough support for this team are sadly mistaken. #SaveTheCrew"

"Players sometimes don't get to see the impact they have on fans buying jerseys, yelling our names, and sharing in the ups and downs of victories and defeats. Thanks for sharing your story. People like you were the fuel to my fire! #SaveTheCrew"

"Once again @Save_The_Crew shows what a committed group of talented supporters can do. I would love to score some goals in a beautiful stadium like this! #SaveTheCrew"

Ethan Finlay, MLS Player

“It's real when it becomes more than backroom chatter. Sad for the City of Columbus & Crew SC supporters. I hope they find a solution to stay”

"Had heard the interest, didn't know it was this far along. Tragic for Columbus if it happens."

Mark Dougherty, former MLS Player

“I said, ‘Who is this Anthony Precourt guy? Oh, he’s a trust fund baby without any business experience who doesn’t care.’ It’s a business to him rather than a family and a team and a culture. Columbus has that. It’s unique. When I played in Tampa, it was a job. Columbus is a family. That comes from Lamar, all the way down. I just imagine, for Anthony, it’s just business and he doesn’t care.”

Brian Carroll, former MLS Player

“I was shocked. I couldn’t believe it. I knew new ownership came in and you never know how that stuff is going to go, but this was one of the last things that I ever expected, for Columbus to even think of moving anywhere else. I thought I was going to be hearing some news about moving to a downtown location and bring the club even closer to the downtown environment and downtown vibe. I didn’t even know ownership had a business connection outside of the Columbus area and that this would even be a possibility.”

Jason Garey, former MLS Player

“I read stuff about it or talk to people in the MLS world, and most people were just like, ‘Really? Columbus?’ It’s just not what you thought. And having a personal connection, it’s jarring. I don’t know how it’s going to end up, obviously, but it would seem to be a shame to move a club with that history and that support. It would be a shame for that city to lose that team.”

Steven Lenhart, former MLS Player

“So now the fans get a little glimpse of what it’s like to be a player in MLS. Generally, people in management only do what works for them. Bottom line. We all think we’re a part of something, but at the end of the day, it’s all smoke and mirrors, man. I mean, we ARE a part of something in the fact that you and I are on the phone, laughing and experiencing joy, but the ground is not as firm and sturdy and safe as you think it is.”

Robbie Rogers, former MLS Player

“When I think of the original MLS teams, I think of Columbus. I think of all the fans that supported us when I was there. Obviously, it’s such a great town. I think of my own memories, so I have a biased opinion because I loved my time there. Whenever I go back, I get chills. Even when I was with the Galaxy, I loved going back and playing. So I was shocked. Shock and sadness came together. But I guess MLS is a massive corporation now, so it’s going to try to make as much money as it can.”

David Winner, former MLS Player

“I’m just really hoping that something good will come out of this. The league, however they want to do it, I mean, I love reading these article about Beckham in Miami. They keep using the words ‘deep discount.’ Deep discount. So Don Garber can give Anthony Precourt a deep discount and give him a team in Austin and leave the team here in Columbus.”

Adam Moffat, former MLS Player

“I just encourage everyone to keep fighting for it. I know it’s not just the Columbus fans. It’s league-wide. I think the consensus across the country is that it’s not a positive thing. It’s a team with more history than pretty much any other team in MLS.”

Duncan Oughton, former MLS Player

“I hope this outpouring is being noticed by the powers that be in various areas of the sport, whether it be ownership or the league or anyone that has a platform or a say. At the end of the day, if the team moves or if the teams stays, the community just showed why players feel so much part of something. The fans are amazing. This group of people is amazing. Whatever happens at the end of the day, everyone that’s a part of the #SaveTheCrew thing and the fans from way back to the fans of today—everyone!—that’s why the Crew has made me personally feel like Columbus is home. And it’s why so many other players, so many of my peers and players before me and players after me, it’s why you love playing for the colors. It’s a huge part of it. I think it’s continually shown through this entire situation. While it’s not a nice situation, it’s a different side of it that no one sees. This is why players have always loved playing in Columbus.”

"Yes you did & now he has a great name! The Crew is family & means so much more than people realize to so many of us. #SaveTheCrew"

Kyle Martino, former MLS and USMNT Player

“When I was little I dreamed of playing soccer for a living #SaveTheCrew made that dream come true. I’m 💔& thinking of the amazing Crew Fans”

"Kids like to dream. Mine was to be a pro soccer player and @ColumbusCrewSC made that come true for me. Great clubs shouldn’t die. Do they have challenges and low points they need to rebound from? Yes, but they need support in those moments. There has to be a way to #SaveTheCrew"

"Hard to stomach the @ColumbusCrewSC being up in the air when you think about who they are and where they’ve been. #SaveTheCrew"

Eric Wynalda, former MLS and USMNT Player

“For personal reasons and I think more important reasons I’m hoping soccer survives in Columbus in some fashion. It almost to a certain extent needs to and I would hope that we’re doing as much as we can to try and make that happen. It’s just not fair to some of the better fans that we have in the country.”

Brian Dunseth, former MLS and USMNT Player

“The following is a list of people across different cities, states, races, religions, genders, ethnicities, abilities and even countries who support Real Salt Lake and believe that the Crew should stay in Columbus: … Brian Dunseth (Dunny/The G.O.A.T)”

William Hesmer, former MLS player

“Don't count out @thesoccerdon yet. An amazing leader who still has time to turn this catastrophe around. Running from CBus is the easy choice; digging in and making it work requires the talents he possesses. Could be his greatest moment should he choose to #SaveTheCrew”

Andy Gruenebaum, former MLS Player

“Had an amazing time at the premier of the @virtualstatman film #savethecrew not at all surprised to see how much love and support is behind this movement! CBUS will always be in our ♥️”

"Had such an amazing trip back to Columbus to celebrate 10 years since winning MLS these this city #savethecrew "

Jon Busch, former MLS Player

“It doesn’t sit well with me,” Busch says. “Business is business and I get that. I own my own glove business so I get the business side of certain things, but at the same time, playing for the Crew and winning with the Crew and being with those fans for five years, when you think of Columbus, you think of the Crew. We still go back because we have a lot of friends in that community and the Crew is part of Columbus. It doesn’t sit well with me.”

Herculez Gomez, former MLS and USMNT Player

"Congratulations @fccincinnati! Looking forward to seeing you in @MLS. Can’t wait for the FC Cincinnati vs @ColumbusCrewSC rivalry to start!!!!! #SaveTheCrew"

"Columbus Crew SC keep the dream alive, not the MLS Cup dream, but the keep @ColumbusCrewSC in Columbus dream. #SaveTheCrew 🙌🏼 Let’s gooooo"

Christian Pulisic, Bundesliga and USMNT Player

"You look at what they’ve built in cities like Portland and Seattle, and what they’re building in places like Atlanta and Cincinnati, and what’s happening with the movement to try to save soccer in Columbus — and it’s inspiring."

Jonathan Mensah, MLS Player

"It incredible to see the amazing people of Columbus, supporting us in all our games no matter the results. We don’t take your undying support for granted. We love and appreciate everything you all do for this team. We keep grinding together guys. #GodIsGreat #CrewSC 🖤💛💪🏽✊🏽"

Do you want to save the crew? "We keep saving the Crew every weekend on the field 🖤💛✊🏽" &

Vladimir Quesada, Saprissa Coach

Quesada said he has been to Columbus before and also got a strong recommendation from Daniel Torres, a good friend of his who played with the Crew from 2001 to 2003.

“Me habló durante mucho tiempo de esta ciudad y su gente, y olviamente lo que significa el Columbus Crew aquí dentro en la ciudad,” he said in Spanish. “Esperamos que no se lo lleven de aquí.”

Which, in English, translates to close to the following: “He talked to me for a long time about this city and its people and obviously what the Columbus Crew means here in the city. We hope you do not take it away from here.”

Wil Trapp, MLS and USMNT Player

"As a kid, you always want to become a professional and to be in your home town. You grow up watching the games, you know a lot of the fans personally. You’re forging new ties and building upon the ones you already had."

"I think we’ve handled it well. I’ve tried to handle it as best I can because obviously there are emotions wrapped around in it. Yes, there are emotions, but it’s my job. It’s my job to win, to play. You can’t let emotions take over what you’re trying to do."

Danny O'Rourke, former MLS Player

"By taking that away from Columbus … you’re ripping this fabric that’s been around since the start of the league. If I ever see myself moving back to Columbus and having children, being able to take them back and say, 'Your dad was a part of this great team that did some great things back in the day,' to not be able to do that would weigh heavy on my heart."

"We can really get out there as a unit and as a community and show other supporters and other groups that people are really feeling for these fans…I’m super proud. The bumper stickers, the signs around town, I hope a year from now everyone will get together and say, 'We were part of this movement that kept the Crew here.'"

Mike Clark, former MLS Player

"It’s gutting. I’m a firm believer that the Crew can’t leave Columbus. Precourt can take those players to wherever, but he won’t be taking the Crew. He’ll be taking the bodies that comprise the team. I really find it hard to believe that the league would make the decision to take the charter member of MLS away from the city of Columbus. If Precourt gets his wish and gets a team wherever, in Austin or wherever it may be, whether it’s local ownership or something is worked out, the Crew will never leave Columbus. There will always be a team in Columbus. That’s my hope."

"The people that have been at the forefront of this movement, the amount of time, effort, their own money that they’ve sacrificed, it’s incredible. The save the crew movement has taken the right approach. They’re showing the world their support of the team. With social media, all the other MLS teams that have supported the Crew’s efforts with #SaveTheCrew signs, even our competitor’s stands. All around the world you see save the Crew stuff."

"It makes you feel really good that you’re a part of something that means this much to people’s lives. I can’t imagine an ownership group not looking at that and saying, 'I’d love to have a customer base that is that loyal.'"

Brad Stuver, MLS player

"Thank you Columbus, for the past 5 years. It has been an amazing journey with tons of amazing people. I am looking forward to what comes next and I want to wish you all luck in your fight to keep your team in your city."

Chad Barson, former MLS player

"Columbus is a soccer town... There is absolutely a soccer culture. I hope the Crew stays."

Ola Kamara, MLS player

"Thank you for everything Columbus Crew🙏🏽 The fans support in every single game and the love you showed me, was inspiring and truly unique. That I will never forget. I hope you get what you deserve in the end. I am proud of being a small part off Crews rich history. Big thanks to the players, coaches, staff and the people around the team. It was great working with you all. Wish you all the best this season and in the future"

Gino Padula, former MLS player

"They can change the badge. They can change whatever they want, but they cannot change the history."

Interview after the world premiere of "Save The Crew: The Battle for Columbus"

Stu Holden, former MLS player, current Fox Sports broadcaster

"This franchise deserves more."

Guillermo Barros Schelotto, former MLS player, Boca Juniors coach

"I feel sorry for the people in Columbus. I have a lot of memories from Columbus, Ohio. But the owner is the chief. But I like Columbus Crew in Ohio"

He made it clear in speaking that Columbus deserves to remain a part of MLS and American Soccer. Schelotto experienced first hand the role Columbus Crew and Columbus, OH had to do with the growth and development of the league.

"Hi people in Columbus. I want to support you. I want to say hello to my former teammates and all fans. They are trying to save the Crew. I hope they can get it."

Julius James, former MLS player

“MAPFRE Stadium is a monument of soccer in the United States,” he said. “How could there not be a professional team there? You can’t give up on the first soccer specific stadium in the United States, that’s part of history.”

“Don’t give up,” he said of the movement. “Keep pushing for what you love, keep supporting the boys, it’s a good team. Give your all until the dying end.”

"To all my friends in Columbus. Keep fighting to the dying end #savethecrew #crewsc don’t give up guys."

Brian Maisonneuve, former MLS & USMNT player

“The talent around Columbus is excellent,” he said. “We’re going to focus on recruiting Ohio. If we can get the best kids out of Ohio, we’ll be doing really well.”

In addition, Maisonneuve said he plans to spend some long-awaited time with Crew coach Gregg Berhalter. They played together as kids, against each other in college and then together again with the United States national team.

It has been roughly two years since he attended a Crew game, Maisonneuve said, but he plans to start visiting practice and soliciting advice from Berhalter and his staff. The hope, too, is that such opportunities won’t be limited to just one year as the team’s ownership weighs a move to Austin, Texas, for the 2019 season.

“It’s hard to think of Columbus without the Crew,” he said. “That’s what brought me here, and I’m so thankful for that. Obviously I would absolutely love for the Crew to stay in Columbus. It’s such a great city and I can’t even imagine it without the Crew.”

Patrice Bernier, former MLS & CanNT player

"Austin FC? #MLS #savetheCrew"