Matchday #24: FC Cincinnati at New York Red Bulls II
MSU Soccer Park – Attendance: – 730
FC Cincinnati got another opportunity against the New York Red Bulls, this time it was against their USL side, Red Bulls II.
From the kickoff, the Red Bulls controlled possession while Cincinnati looked a step slow. In the first ten minutes, the Cincinnati midfield allowed New York to get a few uncontested shots on goal.
The Red Bulls were the first to get on the scoreboard, in the 23′, after a foul by Marco Dominguez in the box granted Stephen Bonomo a penalty. (1-0 NYRBII)
New York defender, Jordan Scarlett, kept Djiby in check for most of the first half, neutralizing any runs the Cincinnati striker attempted against the New York back four. Very few threatening chances came in the first 45′ for Cincinnati as the Orange & Blue were out possessed by a large 58%-42% margin.
In the 42′, a Corben Bone foul led to a Red Bulls free kick. The kick was curled into the box, three Red Bulls got in behind the defense with Hassan Ndam connecting for the home teams second goal. (2-0 NYRBII)
At the half, Coach Alan Koch decided to bring in Jimmy McClaughlin to replace Marco Dominguez. Jimmy’s intensity was impactful but not enough to resurrect the Orange and Blue. In the 53′ Jimmy was able to get in behind the Red Bull defense with a great pass from Greig, but the run was unsuccessful.
There was a slight glimmer of hope in the 65′ when Ndam was shown a second yellow. Now up a man, Cincinnati had the opportunity to get back into this game. Just as soon as there seemed to be hope, all hope disappeared in the 73′ and 74′ when Junior Flemmings buried the Orange and Blue by adding two goals, increasing the Red Bulls lead to four. (4-0 NYRBII)
Much credit to Rafael Diaz, New York Red Bulls II keeper, made some incredible saves to keep Cincinnati off of the scoreboard. But overall FC Cincinnati dropped three points on the road when they need them most to secure a playoff spot for the 2017 postseason.
Final Spot: FC Cincinnati drops to 9th in the table with a few teams on its heels for the last playoff spot. This club needs to create some separation in the playoff picture. Next up is Ottawa, who currently have two wins on the road. The Orange & Blue need to get 3 points in this match to help their standing as well as change their momentum in league play.
Life without Kenney: The midfield void is very apparent when Kenney Walker is not on the pitch. The lineup needs an enforcer in the middle. We have some talented center backs, but we cannot rely on them as our only means of defense.
Focus: The magical cup run is over. This club needs to concentrate its entire focus on the remaining eight matches of the season. We are approaching win or go home, dropping any more points this season could be the final blow to the 2017 campaign.
FC Cincinnati Starting XI (3-5-2): Hildebrandt (GK), (R-L) Berry (75) (c), Nicholson, Delbridge; Hoyte, Quinn, Dominguez (45), Bone, Josu; Greig, Djiby (61)
Subs: Jaye (GK), Bahner, Konig (61), McLaughlin (45), Polak, Schindler, Wiedeman
New York Red Bulls II Starting XI (4-2-3-1): Diaz (GK), Najem, Powder, Ndam, Scarlett; Shigenobu, Flemmings (87), Tinari, Valot; Lewis (67), Bonomo (81)
Subs: Louro, Abidor, Kutler, Schmoll (67), Bartley, Martinez (81), Mines (87)
Tune into the next Cincinnati Soccer Talk podcasts on TUESDAY night at 8 p.m. as we will recap Saturday’s match as well as discuss FC Cincinnati with Special Guest, FC Cincinnati Head Coach Alan Koch.
(LEAGUE) Wednesday 8/23 – vs. Ottawa Fury FC – 7:30 p.m. EST – Nippert Stadium; Cincinnati, OH