Saint Louis FC comes to Nippert Stadium for the second time this season in advance of FC Cincinnati’s Open Cup game on Wednesday vs. the Chicago Fire. STLFC is wanting a do-over after the first meeting, a 4-0 slaughtering at the hands of Djiby. Here are 5 Things to Know going into Saturday night’s match as well as the new March to Matchday Podcast.
Where: Cincinnati, OH – Nippert Stadium
When: Saturday, June 24th at 7:00 p.m. EST
Form: FC Cincinnati – 8th Place (4W-5L-5D, 17 pts.), Saint Louis FC – 12th Place ( 4W-4L-3D, 15 pts.)
March to Matchday: Saint Louis FC – Podcast
Join host Bryan Weigel and guest Matthew Bird of the St. Louligans for the newest show in the CST lineup. March to Matchday will provide an in-depth preview of the upcoming opponent as well as how FC Cincinnati can best defeat them. This show will hopefully fit in your drive time to work, to the pub on game day or lead you right up to game time. We hope you enjoy March to Matchday!
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5 Things to Know
Thy US Open Cup Runneth Over: As FC Cincinnati [2017 “Ohio” State Champions (Bye AFC Cleveland, Bye Crew SC)] continues their magical run in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup (USOC) they must try not to lose focus of the match this weekend.The coaching staff is going to have to keep the team focused on the task at hand Saturday, while most everyone will assuredly be looking forward to the Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer on Wednesday. The run in the USOC is nice but it can create some difficulties for players and coaches alike. FC Cincinnati must begin to show results as they will begin on a stretch of 5 matches over 16 days.
Table Scraps: As much as FC Cincinnati may enjoy being Kings of the US Open Cup at the moment, FCC is closer to being the plebs in the USL and missing the entire postseason. Cincinnati’s inability to secure victories, at home against Charlotte and Charleston has put them in a difficult position. Currently, FCC resides in a tie for 7th place in the table. However, if you take FCC’s average points per match they drop down to a tie for 9th with 1.21 pts/ match (tied with NYRB). For perspective, FCC averaged 1.87 pts/ match last year in route to a third place finish. This match and future USL matches are becoming more and more important as the team has not finished off teams. No better time than now to start working our way up the table, the difference between 5th and 12th is a few points and FCC can’t afford to drop points, especially at home.
Top of the Box: As stated above, the USOC will cause some havoc in the way of player management. Will our Manager continue to run out a 3-5-2 or will he revert back to a single striker? FC Cincinnati’s depth is strong and Victor Mansaray has returned from Sierre Leone National Team duty. If we decide to save “the Double Ds” (Danni and Djiby) for Wednesday, we may see Victor playing up top. The question is, will he get a partner? Daryl Fordyce or Andrew Wiedeman may be options as a secondary striker in this situation if we do not use either Danni or Djiby. A more likely scenario could have Victor up top in the 3-5-2 with Danni and allow Djiby to come on if needed to allow him to save some energy for Chicago. Victor can challenge defenders head on which is a different tactic than we see from both Danni and Djiby, this may be the opportunity where he can display his skills and show that forward is his natural fit. Additional depth at the forward position will better this team immensely.
Never Surrender: The boys in blue and orange have been good defensively, tied for 6th (Richmond & Bethlehem) in the entire USL with 1.07 goals against per match. However, until FCC finds its offense on a consistent basis we can not afford to give up sloppy goals as occurred against Charlotte and Charleston. Either mental lapses (Charleston) or poor positioning has exposed our goalkeeper. As strong as we appear defensively sometimes it is just the timing of when we conceded. Once FCC starts to put 90 minutes together consistently on both offense and defense we should become difficult to stop. Keep charging boys!
Better Preparation: Saint Louis stepped inside Nippert for the first time in 2017 on April 15th. They walked away shell shocked by Djiby Fall, not only losing the match 4-0 but conceding all four goals to Djiby. However exciting that was, don’t expect Djiby or any forward to score four again in one match. STLFC will most likely play defensive and try to counter hoping to steal a point as they have struggled as of late. Preki’s men have one victory over Toronto since April 12 and will be looking to change their form after an impressive performance vs. Chicago last week (USOC). Even though their points per match is slightly higher than FCC at 1.36 to 1.21 they have only acquired 5 points in their last 7 league matches and like Cincinnati must do better.
Stay tuned to Cincinnati Soccer Talk for more news and information leading up to the Saint Louis FC match!
Supporter Groups Pregame Match Parties
We encourage all fans to get down to Clifton early and enjoy themselves at the areas many restaurants and pubs. Many Supporter Groups hang out in the “Short Vine” area where you can join in the march to Nippert Stadium. Some of these locations can be rowdier than others, but families and opposing fans are encouraged to come out and join the various groups. The Supporters March Should begin at approx. 6 p.m.
Die Innenstadt: Mecklenburg Gardens – 302 E University Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45219
The Pride: Ladder 19 – 2701 Vine St, Cincinnati, OH 45219
Queen City Firm: Mio’s Pizzeria Pub – 2634 Vine St, Cincinnati, OH 45219
Queen City Mafia: Short Vine Bearcat Statue Lot – 2700 Block of Vine St, Cincinnati, OH 45219
The Legion: Taste of Belgium Clifton – 2845 Vine St, Cincinnati, OH 45219
The Bailey Bastards: Hang Over Easy – 3 W Charlton St, Cincinnati, OH 45219
For more information and how to join the supporters march, check out our matchday guide!
TV: This contest is set for a 7 p.m. EST kickoff on Saturday night. Broadcasting partner Sinclair Broadcasting Group will now air all FC Cincinnati home & away matches. Saturday’s match will be live on Star64 (WSTR). The match will also be broadcast at FC Cincinnati’s pub partners or by Streaming internet on USL’s Youtube station. Tom Gelehrter will return as the play-by-play announcer for the team’s home matches along with Kevin McCloskey providing color analysis and Lindsay Patterson reporting from the sideline.
RADIO: Simulcast of the TV stream on ESPN 1530AM
@khoetker for @CincySoccerTalk
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