Sean Zawadzki is here to stay! The Crew Academy product and 2023 MLS Cup champion is currently in his third season with the Black & Gold. The 23-year-old played 30 regular season matches in 2023, showcasing his versatility as both a midfielder and defender. He scored three goals, including a clutch 98th-minute equalizer against the New England Revolution on April 15 and a dramatic 94th-minute equalizer against NYCFC on the eighth of July. Zawadzki played a pivotal role in all six postseason matches, contributing to the Crew's capture of the third MLS Cup in club history.
Zawadzki, who joined the Crew as a Homegrown Player two years ago, made his MLS debut as a rookie on June 25th, earning a start and completing the full 90 minutes in a 0-0 draw at Real Salt Lake. Just four days later, he secured another start and scored his first MLS goal with a left-footed shot from distance in the 18th minute of a 2-1 road win at Toronto FC on June 29th. Overall, Zawadzki made five MLS appearances in his debut professional season.
Following the Crew's championship season, Zawadzki received a call-up from U.S. Men's National Team Head Coach Gregg Berhalter to participate in the annual January Training Camp. He earned his first senior cap for the USMNT in an international friendly against Slovenia last month, playing the full 90 minutes in the United States' first match of the year.
The Swiss Army Knife
Sean Zawadzki, an extremely versatile player, will once more play a crucial role in the Crew defense, or midfield whenever called upon. The now defender in Wilfried Nancy’s system, is expected to contribute as both a center back and central midfielder this year. His reliability in both positions was evident last season which brought home the MLS Cup.
Even though Nancy appreciates what he sees in the MLS Cup winner at the back, there are times when Zawadzki is needed to provide midfield cover as a rotation option. It is also worth noting that in games where he started on the bench, the 23-year-old is typically the first name to replace either a midfielder or defender, which just goes to show he’s an important tool in NancyBall.
Zawadzki aims to sustain his impressive performance in professional soccer and defend his club's MLS Cup title. The reigning champions return to action on February 24th against Atlanta United, right here in Columbus.