Ethan Finlay scored in his first game against his former team to lead Minnesota United to a 1-0 victory over the Columbus Crew at Allianz Field in St. Paul, Minn., on Saturday.
Finlay put the Loons (5-4-3) ahead in the 70th minute with his first goal of the season and 36th of his MLS career, 30 of which were scored for the Crew from 2012 until mid-2017 when he was traded to Minnesota.
Vito Mannone did not make a save against the struggling Crew (5-8-1) for his third shutout.
The Crew, which took four shots, has lost seven of eight and five straight on the road. Columbus was blanked for the sixth time, including the past two matches.
Minnesota took the lead after a short corner led to a service to the left post by Romain Metanire. Brent Kallman headed the ball to an unmarked Finlay, his former teammate at Creighton University, to finish the play past Crew backup goalkeeper Jon Kempin.
Crew and U.S. goalkeeper Zack Steffen missed his second straight game. The first was for a sore right foot. On Friday he tested it in training and sustained a concussion during a shot drill. The Crew was also without midfielder Pedro Santos, who is in Portugal with his ailing father.
Kempin's start was his first of the season and the 20th in his 10-year MLS career. He was tested in the 20th minute when he fully extended to stop a shot by Darwin Quintero that was targeted for the lower right corner.
Minnesota thought it scored just before the break, but Quintero touched the ball in an offside position after a header by Kallman.
The teams next play on May 25 with the Crew at Colorado and Minnesota hosting Houston.