Cincinnati Soccer Talk’s End of Season Awards are back for FC Cincinnati’s inaugural MLS season. On Monday, we released our 2019 Fan-Vote Player of the Year, Emmanuel Ledesma. On Tuesday, we released our Goal of the Year, Leonardo Bertone’s strike in Seattle, followed by Wednesday’s Funny Awards. Today we present our Moment of the Year. We will release our Staff-Voted Player of the Year on Friday. Stay tuned to CST as we look back on our favorite points of the 2019 FC Cincinnati season.
This year’s Moment of the Year was a near-unanimous selection. After last year’s moment, the MLS announcement, FC Cincinnati fans could hardly wait for the first MLS home game at Nippert Stadium.
Rob Peirce: Inaugural home match
On a chilly St. Patrick’s Day afternoon in March, the day finally arrived. The usual pregame spots on and around Short Vine were bubbling with anticipation. It was time to declare “MLS, welcome to Cincinnati.” The march to Nippert seemed endless, with footage captured by CST’s Ken Hoetker shot around the world and back on Twitter. BBC media came across the pond to capture the event.
It was truly a soccer holiday here in Cincinnati that extended to the pitch with a 3-0 FC Cincinnati victory over the Portland Timbers. Kendall Waston headed home service on a free kick in the 15th minute. In the 61st minute, Allan Cruz scored on a brilliant backheel that was a Goal of the Year candidate. Nippert was still ringing when Mathieu Deplagne tapped one in just two minutes later to cap the festivities.
There were plenty of matches this season that FC Cincinnati fans would like to forget. But this one will stick around in our memories for a long time. It was the perfect day for the city. With the national spotlight beaming in, club and fans reveled in the occasion. The entire day, from the march to the final whistle, is our Moment of the Year.