Columbus Crew kicks off MLS is Back Tournament Saturday against Cincinnati

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Gyasi Zardes takes part in training as the Columbus Crew prepares for the MLS is Back Tournament. (Columbus Crew)

The Columbus Crew will return to game action Saturday for the first time since March 7.

The Crew will take on in-state rival Cincinnati FC in both teams' opening match of the MLS is Back Tournament in Orlando.

Columbus has been training in Orlando since June 29 ahead of its matchup with Cincinnati.

The Crew's pre-tournament training has not gone without some adversity. The Crew announced on July 2 that one of its players had tested positive for COVID-19.

Head coach Caleb Porter said the team took two days of training off after the positive tests and has since had more than five negatives COVID-19 tests.

Porter also said his team has three or four players battling injuries going into Saturday's match.

Columbus and Cincinnati will kick things off at 10:30 p.m. Saturday in the first round of group play. The Crew will also take on Atlanta United FC and New York Red Bulls in group play.

The top two teams out of each group, along with the four best third-place finishers, will move on to the knockout stage which will begin with the Round of 16, which will be played from July 25 to July 28.