FCC 2 vs NYCFC II preview: Orange and Blue look to increase winning streak to five

FC Cincinnati 2 look to keep up their form in the lastest MLS Next Pro match

Photo Credit: David Starcher

FC Cincinnati 2 (10-4-1) hopes to make it three wins in three home games and to extend their winning streak to five matches on Sunday when they face off against New York City FC II (6-3-3) at Scudamore Stadium.


The Baby Blues lead the all-time series with a (3-0-1) record versus The Orange and Blue. The last time these two sides met FCC 2 came away with a 2-0 victory at home last season.


The Young Pigeons currently sit in eighth place in the Eastern Conference with 22 points, coming off a 3-1 win over Toronto FC II, NYCFC II is in great form winning their last three matches.

Sunday will be the battle of elite defenses, while FCC 2 has given up a league-low 17 goals, NYCFC II is right behind them with only 18 goals conceded in MLS NEXT Pro this season.

The offensive side for NYCFC II has been a bright spot this season, forward Taylor Calheira leads the team with 10 goal contributions, seven goals, and three assists. Mexican striker Jonathan Jimenez has tallied four goals and three assists on the year, along with fellow striker Ronald Arevalo, who leads the team with four assists and three goals.

Versatile, technical, and explosive attack, which is what NYCFC’s DNA has always been.

It’s worth noting The Young Blues have played the least amount of games in the East with 12, which may be a reason for their current place in the standings since the majority of the teams up the table have played 15-16 matches this season. There is plenty of time left in the season for NYCFC II to climb up the standings, they could make that start on Sunday with a statement win.


From setting the club points and home attendance record, It’s been all ‘sunshine and rainbows’ the last four matches for FC Cincinnati 2.

One of the bright spots has been forward Kenji Mboma Dem, who has scored back-to-back game-winning goals for FCC 2 in the last two games and has a total of six goal contributions since returning to the lineup for head coach Tyrone Marshall.

Stefan Chirila also returned from Injury against New England, having the MLS Next Pro All-Star will help bolster the FCC 2 attack even more along with the likes of Mboma Dem, Guilherme Santos, Ben Stitz, and Jesus Castellano.

Center-back Brian Schaefer has played every single second for The Orange and Blue this season, and with London Aghedo and Isiah Foster spending some time with the first team he has been more important than ever. He was arguably the Man of the Match the last two games and has been a crucial part in FCC 2 only conceding two goals in the last four games.

Last game, Marshall spoke about the team not only earning three points but also doing it with a shutout has been important for the team’s mentality and culture.

“I think it was important for the group as a whole. Because that’s one of the goal settings that we made prior to the start of this part of the season, to get better on the defensive side, have more clean sheets because we’ve been close a couple of times and penalty kicks,” Marshall said.

It’s been rinsed and repeated for FCC 2 during this stretch, and they look to get their 11th win of the season on Sunday. A win and a Philadelphia Union II draw or loss against New England would place The Orange and Blue in first place in the East.


Taylor Calheira – #99, NYCFC II

Calheira has been one of the most dangerous attackers in MLS NEXT Pro this season, while his impact on the team goes beyond the boxscore, he’ll have to find his name on the scoresheet on Sunday.

Piero Elias – #42, NYCFC II 

A box-to-box midfielder, Elias is very important in connecting passes in the midfield for The Young Pigeons. He can also create chances, as the NYC native has four assists on the year as well.

Brian Schaefer – #38, FC Cincinnati 2

Anchoring the backline, Schaefer has quickly become one of the leaders for FCC 2. His communication and ability to defend in one-on-one situations will be crucial against a very explosive NYCFC attack.

Stefan Chirila – #77, FC Cincinnati 2

Returning from injury, it’ll be intriguing to see what role Chirila plays either in the starting IX or off the bench for FCC 2. His ability to stretch opponents’ defenses has been missed, we’ll see what kind of chemistry he develops with Mboma Dem and others up front.


Kick-off for the match is set for 7 p.m. at Scudamore Stadium, you can watch on the MLS Season Pass on Apple TV.

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