FC Cincinnati Starting XI – Bengals Edition

Cincinnati Bengals

FC Cincinnati announced on Monday afternoon that several Cincinnati Bengals players will be honorary captains for Saturday’s game. Giovani Bernard, Vontaze Burfict, Jeremy Hill, Kevin Huber, Adam Jones, Dre Kirkpatrick and Domata Peko will “suit-up” for the Orange Out vs. the Pittsburgh Riverhounds.

As I am a huge Bengals fan, I wanted to come up with a Starting XI and bench comprised of Bengals players and why I picked them in those positions.

Feel free to comment below with your selections or email them to or tweet at @cincysoccertalk

I personally like a 4-2-3-1 as my preferred FIFA line up, so I thought that it is only fitting to use that.

Forward: Tyler Eifert
AM: Giovani Bernard, Andy Dalton (C), AJ Green
DM: Geroge Iloka, AJ McCarron
Defense: Adam Jones, Andrew Whitworth, Margus Hunt, Ryan Hewitt
Goalkeeper: Carlos Dunlap

Reserves: (7)
GK: Michael Johnson
Defenders-: Dre Kirkpatrick- Fullback, Karlos Dansby- Centerback
Midfielders: Jeremy Hill- CM, Deep Lying Playmaker- Kevin Huber, Vontaze Burfict – Stopper/Defense
Forward: Cedric Peerman

LineupWhy I Picked Them?

Tyler Eifert – I like Tyler’s ability to score at a consistent rate. When Dalton looks ahead to dish the ball, Eifert has shown he is good in small spaces.

Attacking Midfielders:
Giovani Bernard – LM: Giovani is elusive and can make space from nothing. If he can stay strong against physical fullbacks, he would make for a great wide player. Can cut inside and out with the best of them.
Andy Dalton – CAM: Not the most athletic center-attacking midfielder, but he does his homework and has above average vision. He is good on his shorter passes, but can get sloppy in high pressure situations. Proven winner.
AJ Green – RM: He is one of the best in the game at beating defenders one-on-one. Dalton has gotten Green in sticky situations before, but AJ normally has the talent to make a skill move for a big play.

Defensive Midfielders
George Iloka – Iloka is one of the best last chance stoppers there is. He is good at reading talented passers to stuff out any deep threats. Can also move in possession and has been know to score after intercepting long passes.
AJ McCarron – Did a great job in a late season pressure situation. This player has had issues with his shorter touches, but can drop a long pass on a dime. Plays better when the game is in front of him. Similar to Pirlo, not great defense.

Adam Jones – LB: This defensive stalwart has been a key in some of the most stingy defenses in the league. He knows how to get the ball in one-on-one situations, and has been known to score when the team “punts”.
Andrew Whitworth – CB: One of the more vocal leaders on the team. Not the fastest player, but always remains calm in tough situations. Should win many headers at 6’7″ tall.
Margus Hunt – CB: This 6’8″ Estonian is a massive hulk in the scoring area, limiting teams chances. Has been know to make some rash “tackles”. Should be in this position for the foreseeable future.
Ryan Hewitt – RB: I don’t see both fullbacks as needing to be the fastest players on the team. This “blue-collar” player is a foundation to the squad. His value is most noticed while he was injured late in the year. He never shy’s away from bigger more physical players that play “up-front”.

Carlos Dunlap – I am not sure any balls will get past these python arms. I refer to Dunlap as “Sir Swat”, knocking down offensive opportunities just as they happen. He has been know to make tackles “in-the-box” as well. Is good with his feet.

GK: Michael Johnson – Again, another huge player that can make athletics plays with his arms.
Dre Kirkpatrick – Fullback: A speedy threat off the bench. Been known to make mistakes, just as much as highlights.
Karlos Dansby – Centerback: This veteran has made a trademark as the last line of defense. Tough to get by him.
Jeremy Hill – Winger: Offers an attacking threat when going forward. Can be hesitant with the ball. Big Playmaker.
Kevin Huber – CAM: He sometimes likes to drop deep, see the field and put the ball where he wants it. Accurate Passer.
Vontaze Burfict – CDM: When he is on the field, people are scared. Can accumulate fouls, but is an impact player.
Forward: Cedric Peerman – Peerman is a veteran. One who knows how to make plays with his feet. Key off the bench.

I hope that you enjoyed this fun article. In no way am I qualified to judge these players on an American Football level. I am a big fan of all of them and please take this in jest.

@Bryanweigel for @cincysoccertalk

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