Matchday #29 – Louisville City FC vs. FC Cincinnati
Slugger Field – Louisville, Ky. – Attendance: N/A
Result: Match postponed in 38th minute with FC Cincinnati leading 1-0
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — FC Cincinnati fans waiting for a final shot at redemption against Louisville City FC will have to wait a bit longer.
Match officials postponed what potentially is FCC’s final Dirty River Derby matchup with Louisville in the 38th minute on Saturday at Slugger Field. There’s no date scheduled yet to resume the match.
Corben Bone bounced one in off the right post in the 23rd minute on service from Emmanuel Ledesma for a 1-0 lead. The match will pick up where it left off, according to Louisville City officials, meaning FCC will retain its one-goal advantage.
“Nobody controls the weather obviously,” FCC coach Alan Koch said after the postponement was announced. “It is what it is. But this is obviously one of the poorest playing surfaces in professional soccer anywhere in the world. That’s obviously not a positive for us or for Louisville anyways. But having to come play when the weather was as bad as it is, and you could see how dangerous it is on that field — it’s a huge challenge for us and for Louisville.
“I’ve said this all along — the Louisville players are the ones I feel the most for, because they have to play on that surface every single week. That’s not very good for them and their health. I’ll congratulate the officials, and I’ll congratulate the (Louisville) operations staff for making a smart decision. Whether it was weather based or surface based, it’s immaterial. They got us off the pitch, and as far as I could tell none of our players or their players got injured, thank goodness.”
Weather conditions were a factor from the opening minute. The teams played in the driving rain at Slugger. Long passes died on the pitch, and even short ones were tricky. Players slipped, slided and tumbled.
The match finally entered a lightning delay in the 38th minute. Soon after, match officials called off play for the night with plenty of standing water on the pitch.
FCC entered Saturday on a 16-match unbeaten streak, lasting 104 days. That streak will last at least another eight days, when FCC hosts Toronto FC II on Sept. 16. The Orange and Blue sit atop the USL East on 60 points — 11 ahead of Pittsburgh — at 18-3-6. Louisville is in third with 47 points and a 13-5-8 record.
The club’s last loss was at the hands of Louisville back on May 26 at Nippert — three days before the MLS expansion bid announcement.
Louisville won the prior two matches this season at Nippert with two clean sheets against FCC and is on a three-game winning streak against the Orange and Blue.
The inclement weather was a factor from the opening minute. The pitch was poor and potentially dangerous. Match officials recognized this during the lightning delay and made the correct decision to halt the match.
Louisville City FC Starting XI: Greg Ranjitsingh (GK), Paolo Delpiccolo, Alexis Souahy, Paco Craig, Cameron Lancaster, Niall McCabe, Ilija Ilic, Oscar Jimenez, George Davis IV, Kyle Smith, Devon Williams
Subs: Tim Dobrolowski, Pat McMahon, Sean Totsch, Shaun Francis, Jose Carranza, Richard Ballard, Luke Spencer
FC Cincinnati Starting XI: Spencer Richey (GK), Justin Hoyte, Forrest Lasso, Paddy Barrett, Blake Smith, Kenney Walker, Corben Bone (goal, 23′), Nazmi Albadawi, Emmanuel Ledesma, Fatai Alashe, Emery Welshman
Subs: Fanendo Adi, Russell Cicerone, Tyler Gibson, Dekel Keinan, Danni König, Jimmy McLaughlin, Evan Newton
CIN — Corben Bone 23′
Next USL Match: FC Cincinnati vs. Toronto FC II – Sunday, Sept. 16 – 4:30 PM (EST) – Nippert Stadium