Monterrey rolls past Columbus Crew

Maximiliano Meza scored twice to help Monterrey earn a 3-0 win over Columbus Crew SC in the second leg of their 2021 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal.

This gives Monterrey a 5-2 win on aggregate goals and a spot in the semifinals, where they will face fellow Liga MX side Cruz Azul.

Monterrey had a solid start as they grabbed a 1-0 lead in the 3’. Vincent Janssen’s cross from the left was blocked by Columbus GK Eloy Room, but the ball deflected right into the path of Meza, who was then able to sink it in the back of the net.

Columbus tried to respond and they had several chances, two coming from Gyasi Zardes, but they were unable to beat Monterrey GK Luis Cardenas.

Janssen nearly doubled the lead in the 19’ on a Columbus defensive error, but Room made a big save to keep it a one-goal game.  

Monterrey would get their second goal with a strong right-footed finish from Meza in the 26’ with Janssen once again assisting, to make it 2-0 to the Rayados.

Columbus hoped to stay within reach and nearly scored shortly before halftime, but Zardes could not steer a header on target in front of the goal.

Monterrey looked to put Columbus away in the second half and it came off the right foot of Miguel Layun, who drilled a free kick into the top right corner in the 71’ to extend the lead to 3-0.

From there on, the Monterrey defense took over to secure the shutout and secure a spot in the next round.