In this segment, we’ll highlight our feature article of the week, and take a look at some of the best FC Cincinnati related content produced by other outlets. It’s a way to recap the week’s events and share content that we think is worth your attention.
It’s been a busy week for the FC Cincinnati loyal. With the stadium situation still not settled, the on-the-horizon possibility of an MLS invitation, and a great win over the Battery in Charleston, Cincinnati fans have a lot to keep their eyes on.
Opinion: Tuning Out the MLS Expansion Jam Band – Orange & Blue Press / Michael Walker
Michael Walker penned a great article this week in regards to the MLS situation still ongoing in the Queen City; his analysis, tune it out. All of the noise surrounding the acceptance or snubbing of our boys in Orange & Blue has drained much of the fanbase, so the best action for all of us is to focus on the season ahead and keep the MLS decision on the backburner.
USL’s Rivalries Heighten Fans’ Passions – USL / Chris Hockman
Our next showdown in the USL regular season will be against Indy Eleven on the road next weekend and our boys won’t be alone. Busses filled with Cincinnati diehards will be traveling to the Hoosier state to support FCC. However, many eyes are on the big derby match, Louisville City, at home the following weekend. The USL put together a great list of the USL’s best rivalries and says of our cup, “In just two seasons the River Cities Cup has become one of the biggest rivalries…having fought six phenomenally entertaining matches.” FCC will have home-field advantage in the first leg of the derby, and with an expected sell-out crowd, they will look to bring the fire against Louisville.
Goalkeeper Evan Newton impresses in FC Cincinnati debut – Cincinnati.com / Charlie Hatch
Locally, many eyes have been on FCC’s new keeper, Evan Newton. With a 100% save rate against the Charleston Battery, he shined in his season and team debut. Hailing from Virginia Beach, Newton is looking to make his mark on FCC after spending the last two seasons on the West Coast with Sacramento. Coach Koch sees that mark already, saying, “He made a couple [of saves] I wouldn’t expect any goalkeeper to make. He helped his defense several times, which they gained confidence from that and you could see they grew as the game went along, too.” Mitch Hildebrandt left a lasting legacy in Cincinnati with monumental saves against some large foes, particularly in 2017, so Newton has a lot to prove to the Cincy faithful. But after five fine saves in Charleston, he’s on track to have a great season.
Where Are They Now – Cincinnati Soccer Talk / Bryan Weigel
Looking to the past, our friends over at Cincy Soccer Talk put together a great list of former FC Cincinnati players that have moved onto different teams and into different leagues. Most notably, Mitch Hildebrandt joined the Atlanta United squad in MLS, sitting just under United States national goalie, Brad Guzan. A large handful of Cincinnati’s former players have remained in the USL with Pat McMahon and Luke Spencer going to rival Louisville in the past two offseasons.
ICYMI on Twitter
A couple of FC Cincinnati players grabbed week one honors for their performance last Saturday against Charleston. Evan Newton locked down the save of the week and Dekel Keinan was selected to the USL team of the week.
— USL (@USL) March 23, 2018
NEWS (Not a Link): FC Cincinnati Tops the Crew Reserves in Columbus
There’s also a little match news to share today despite the bye weekend. FC Cincinnati defeated the Columbus Crew reserves in a closed-door friendly on Sunday by a 4-2 scoreline. Russell Cicerone, Daniel Haber, Emery Welshman, and Manu Ledesma all stamped their names on the scoresheet. Although this weekend’s planned friendly at the University of Dayton was canceled due to wintry weather, two different groups of eleven got valuable minutes against high-level competition. Also of note, Jimmy McLaughlin came in with 15 minutes remaining to get his first action since sustaining a shoulder injury against Sacramento Republic FC.
The 2018 season will have a lot to offer new and returning FC Cincinnati fans, so keep your eyes peeled for more updates both locally and around the league.