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Columbus Crew Clinch 2009 Supporters' Shield

October 22, 2009 - Major League Soccer (MLS) News Release

NEW YORK (Thursday, Oct. 22, 2009) - The Columbus Crew clinched their second consecutive Supporters' Shield on Thursday night by virtue of Chivas USA's loss to the Chicago Fire. The Crew have a record of 13-6-10 with 49 points and cannot be surpassed by any clubs. The Supporters' Shield, initiated by fan groups, is an awarded annually to the supporters of the team with the best regular-season record in MLS.

Chivas USA entered Week 32, the final week of the regular season, with a record of 13-9-6 and 45 points and were the only team that could have caught Columbus. Chicago clinched its postseason berth with a 1-0 victory over Chivas USA, which is still in contention the top seed in the Western Conference and hosts Houston Dynamo on Sunday at 3 p.m. ET in the season finale for both teams.

The Crew have clinched the top spot in the Eastern Conference and are guaranteed home field advantage throughout the playoffs. The Crew have one regular season game remaining this Sunday versus the New England Revolution at 6 p.m. ET (ESPN2, ESPN Deportes).

Columbus followed their 2008 MLS Cup championship season by posting the best regular season record for the third time in club history. This marks the second time in the League's 14-year history that a club has won consecutive Supporters' Shield trophies. D.C. United accomplished the feat in 2006 and 2007. Last season marked the fourth time that the Supporters' Shield winner went on to capture MLS Cup.

The Supporters' Shield was created by fans in the early years of Major League Soccer and the bronze trophy was unveiled at the inaugural Supporters' Summit prior to MLS Cup 1998.

The first Supporters' Shield trophy was presented in early 1999 by Kansas City supporter Sam Pierron and a group of fans to Los Angeles Galaxy head coach Octavio Zambrano, who coached the 1998 Galaxy to the best record in MLS that year. Since then, the Supporters' Shield has been passed on from fans of previous year's winner to the new winner's supporters in a ceremony during the year-end Supporters' Summit.

Major League Soccer Supporters' Shield winners

1996: Tampa Bay Mutiny*

1997: D.C. United*

1998: Los Angeles Galaxy

1999: D.C. United

2000: Kansas City Wizards

2001: Miami Fusion

2002: Los Angeles Galaxy

2003: Chicago Fire

2004: Columbus Crew

2005: San Jose Earthquakes

2006: D.C. United

2007: D.C. United

2008: Columbus Crew

2009: Columbus Crew

*Awarded retroactively

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