A few images from Saturday’s contest:
Interesting Information Nuggets
The record attendance set Saturday evening, the highest attendance for a soccer match played in the state of Ohio, will again get national and even international headlines. Here is the first of several plaudits from news sources: UK’s telegraph. It will likely be short-lived though. At the end of July, Real Madrid and PSG will play at Ohio State’s Horseshoe and that attendance will almost certainly eclipse this record. It’ll be nice while it lasts though.
While over 35,000 fans packed Nippert Stadium, over 30,000 fans checked out the USL’s live stream of the match on Facebook. The match is still out there to view if you are interested.
Corben Bone was curiously absent from the game. Let’s hope it’s not due to injury. You’d have to believe that he would have participated if fully fit.
A couple of other injury concerns cast a small shadow over this otherwise magnificent event. Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha picked up an ankle injury that saw him leave the field on crutches. Ross Tomaselli also left the game limping and wincing in pain after entering as a second half substitute.
FC Cincinnati captain and Cincinnati native Austin Berry got his first start for FC Cincinnati since his April thigh injury. One would expect him to start in some or all of the heavy schedule of games that follows this friendly.
FC Cincinnati created several quality chances to score a goal in this match. It’s a shame they couldn’t convert one of them because a goal would have taken an already ecstatic crowd to fever pitch. There were no less than 5 gilt-edged chances to grab a goal (Nicholson 4′, Cummings 44′, McLaughlin 46′, Mohomed 51′, Luke 85′). In some cases Palace snuffed out the chance, for others FCC just missed the opportunity.
What a performance by 3rd string goalkeeper Dan Williams who had 3 saves during the short period of time he played in the second half. His performance and highlight reel stop to deny a certain Andros Townsend goal earned him man of the match honors from the Star 64 commentary crew.
Kudos to the coaching staff for making sure almost everyone on the team got an opportunity to play and participate in this historic game. Paul Nicholson, a native of Whitehaven, England, also got a start in midfield. Classy stuff.
Congratulations are in order to the USL’s Richmond Kickers, who played and defeated the Premier League’s Swansea City 2-0 last night. #USLRising
Crystal Palace committed 14 fouls to FC Cincinnati’s 8. Typically one would expect the USL side to be doing more of the fouling, to disrupt the passing and minimize scoring chances of their higher league opposition. This game had physicality to it, especially for a friendly match. Several collisions produced stops in the game so players could receive treatment.
“From the big picture you always want to get players to develop. I thought our boys played really well. They created chances. Overall, big picture, the guys played really well. It was a great occasion for everyone, the city, the club, everyone.”
“I think when you play against greater competition, it allows you to be a better player. Whatever we have learned from this game, we are going to take it to the next game on Wednesday and just get better.
Dan Williams –
“I had so many friends and family from far way come [tonight]. Just trying to see what I do in practice. It’s unbelievable. Every day is a dream come true. I am just so happy right now.”
With FC Cincinnati idle in USL league play due to this friendly, the top 2 in the Eastern conference made progress in the standings. Second place NY Red Bulls II, FCC’s next opponent, continued their winning ways and defeated the Charlotte Independence 2-1 at Ramblewood. Louisville City also won on the road by demolishing the Wilmington Hammerheads in NC 4-1.
Next, 3rd place FC Cincinnati will turn their attention to a stretch of 3 matches over 11 days that will shape who sits on top of the Eastern Conference at the end of the season.
July 20 – NY Red Bulls II (2nd place)
July 23 – Louisville City (1st place ) – also the last match of the River Cities Cup (i.e.: “Dirty River Derby”)
July 30 – Charleston Battery (4th place)
Come back to Orange and Blue Press this week for more insight, analysis and color commentary on FC Cincinnati.