Afful on target as Crew thrashed New York City in playoffs

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The full-back went past five defenders before slotting in his first goal of the season for Columbus Crew

Ghana defender Harrison Afful was on target as Columbus Crew romped to a 4-1 victory over New York City in the first leg of the Eastern Conference semi-finals at the MAPFRE Stadium on Tuesday.

Ola Kamara opened the scoring for the hosts by the sixth minute before Jose Artur and Justin Meram made it 3-0 later on.

Former Barcelona striker David Villa pulled one back for the visitors in the 78th minute.

Late in additional time, Afful latched on to a pass from Meram and went past five defenders before calmly slotting home his effort to restore his side's three-goal lead.

“Credit goes to all the guys,” Afful said.

“I had been waiting for a long time to get a goal, and finally [it happened] this year. I’m happy and enjoying this moment,” he added.

Crew midfielder Meram was full of praise of Afful after the game and he believes the Ghanaian is a special player.

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“I don’t even know what to say about that goal,” he said. “Harrison’s special. Honestly, I just couldn’t believe the goal. But that’s him.

"He does this stuff in training sometimes that you guys don’t see. That’s what makes him special,” he added.

Aside Afful, Jonathan Mensah also played full throttle for Crew while Alhassan Abubakar and Mohammed Abu were two other Ghanaians who featured, as they replaced Federico Fernando Higuain and Arthur respectively in second half.

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