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Cucho Hernandez already bringing Columbus Crew ‘to life’ in goalscoring debut

It didn’t take long for Cucho Hernandez to bring his Premier League quality to Major League Soccer.

Hernandez made his Columbus Crew debut as a 62nd-minute substitute against the Chicago Fire at the weekend after completing a club-record move from Watford in late June.

The Crew were 2-0 down in Chicago when Hernandez entered the field, but scored three goals in 20 minutes with Hernandez racing behind the Fire defense and chipping over goalkeeper Gabriel Slonina to complete a remarkable comeback.

It’s about as perfect a debut cameo as you’re likely to find and the best way for Columbus to show supporters exactly why they parted with $10m to sign Hernandez, who scored five goals in 25 appearances during the 2021/22 Premier League campaign.

“I think what you saw in the 30-minute snapshot is what you’re going to get,” Crew head coach Caleb Porter said of Hernandez after the match. “He’s a dynamic player. The way that he gobbled up ground, his explosiveness on the goal, you saw it. He’s probably quicker than you guys thought. We saw that on film. His quality at the end, I mean, his final touch to then basically just dink it over the ‘keeper – that’s the type of player that he is. Little stuff: He holds the ball, he was able to dribble underneath and get out of stuff, tight spaces. We really liked that in scouting him.


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