Brazilian defender Gláuber was the goal-scoring catalyst in a 1-0 Columbus Crew victory over Trillium Cup rival Toronto FC as the two MLS sides kicked off the Disney Pro Soccer Classic, taking place Feb. 9-23 at the ESPN Wide World of Sport Complex in Orlando. One of three new international additions to the Crew lineup along with Ghanaian forward Dominic Oduro and Argentine midfielder Matías Sánchez, the 29-year-old Gláuber made a vital contribution on both ends as Columbus kept the clean sheet in the low-scoring affair.
The decisive strike came in the 30th minute. Federico Higuaín struck a beautiful ball off a corner kick that sailed into the scrum near the goalmouth. Gláuber got his head to the cross, leaving Stefan Frei incapable of any attempt as he nodded the ball into the upper right corner. It would prove the only opportunity capable of penetrating the goalmouth on either side of the pitch.
For the Crew it was their third preseason victory in four attempts, having dispatched of DC United and the Chicago Fire at a January preseason training camp in Bradenton, FL. Columbus fell at the same locale to the New York Red Bulls in their most recent match on Feb. 1 before shifting to Orlando.
For Toronto the match was their first of the preseason, leaving plenty for head coach Ryan Nelsen and his staff to address ahead of the regular season. They get their next chance to remedy the deficit of goals when they take on the Orlando City Soccer Club in Wednesday’s nightcap; Columbus will play the first game of the quadruple-header, taking on the Philadelphia Union with hopes of claiming a spot in the championship match of the preseason tournament.
Did you miss the match? Watch the full replay courtesy of MLS!