Columbus Crew centre-back Jonathan Mensah insists it is an “amazing time” when the start of the Major League Soccer season is approaching.
The forthcoming campaign will be Mensah's third in the American top flight league after joining from Russian side Anzhi Makhachkala as the fifth Designated Player in club history.
The 28-year-old has gone on to established himself as a vital figure in the team, making a total of 53 appearances for them.
With only eight days to the commencement of the new season, Mensah is eager for the regular season matches with learning the system and the preparation needed for the matches that count.
“We feel good, you know it’s always amazing when the start of the season is approaching because we know the feeling, the first game of the season is always important,” said defender Mensah following training on Friday morning. “The group has been very, very responsive in the trainings…and it’s been great so far.”
“We have to shift the gears now because our preseason mode is going to be over soon and we have to focus on the League now, which is our first game against Red Bull, so that’s what we’re doing now,” Mensah said.
When asked if there is a different energy heading into the season, Mensah agreed, alluding to how the team now has one sole focus – giving the Black & Gold faithful what they want.
“There is because you know, it’s a broad thing and we are starting to feel that everything is relaxed; not in the sense that ‘oh, we are relaxed’ – we are going into the games like we are tough – but your mind is clear now. You know where the team is, where the team is gonna be for years now. You don’t have any speculations of where the team will be playing, so now we just have to go out there and give the fans what they want.”
Columbus Crew will host New York Red Bull at the MAPFRE Stadium in the opening fixture of the season on Saturday, March 3, 2019.