Cristian Higuita has had a year to remember -- not just for his stats, but for his resilience.
Higuita started the year still nursing a calf injury and having to work extra hard to get his fitness levels up to acceptable standards. He went unused in four of City’s first five games before bagging his first goal in nearly two years.
His goal against Colorado came as Higuita was paired with Yotún in the holding midfield, a partnership that propelled City through four of its six wins early on. Higuita held onto his spot -- and scored a couple more goals -- for the 11 of the next 12 games, but came down with an injury and missed a month.
The 24-year-old Colombian got his first look under James O’Connor in Columbus and has started every game since then. He knocked in his fourth goal of the season -- extending his career high -- at the LA Galaxy following a nice give-and-go with Kljestan.
“Personally I think I’ve done a good job this year. It’s one of my best years here,” said Higuita, who was one of the Club’s first signings ahead of its 2015 expansion season and is the longest-tenured Lion. “But I want the team to make the playoffs. It’s something I’ve wanted since I arrived. I love this Club so much, I love the supporters, I love everything about it and I try to leave everything on the field every single game to make sure we accomplish that goal."