All draws are not equal. Just ask Sigi Schmid.
The Columbus Crew coach was pleased with his team's effort in a scoreless draw against the New York Red Bulls at Giants Stadium on Wednesday night. He was singing a different tune Saturday night following a 1-1 tie at home against Chivas USA, which followed another 1-1 home draw, with New England.
"It was a workmanlike tie on the road," he said. "This result on the road is a good result for us. If we had won at home on Saturday, then this result looks even better. We came in and played on turf, which is not a surface we're used to. We should be highly motivated today because us coming out with a point is good."
There are several reasons why Schmid is optimistic, despite the club seeing its winless streak extended to five games. There was the play of goalkeeper Noah Palmer, who made four saves in earning his first clean sheet of the year. Most impressive was the diving stop of a deflected shot by Seth Stammler in the 90th minute.
"I think he gained us a point tonight," Schmid said. "He came up with a big save in the first half and a solid save in the second half. Definitely his best game."
Schmid also praised defenders Marcos Gonzalez and Chad Marshall, as well as Jose Retiz in the midfield.
But the Crew continue to struggle in the offensive third. After putting half of their eight shots on frame in the opening half, the Crew missed the mark on all 10 of their second half attempts. The most dangerous opportunity came from the foot of Joseph Ngwenya, who hit the far post in the 64th minute.
"Offensively for us, we're trying to find the guys who are going to be consistent for us," Schmid said. "Joseph has probably been our most consistent performer, in terms of being dangerous, being close. Eddie Gaven is there, but there was a play in the first half where a hesitation cost us some plays that would end up in goals. It's a little bit not being comfortable together but we're looking for that consistency."
Dylan Butler is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.