FC Cincinnati’s Greg Garza Selected for USMNT Camp

Newly acquired FC Cincinnati defender Greg Garza was called-up to the U.S. Men’s National Team for their annual January Camp.

Image: Stephanie Romero

Newly acquired FC Cincinnati defender Greg Garza was called-up to the U.S. Men’s National Team for their annual January Camp. Garza becomes the first player in FC Cincinnati history to earn that honor.

The January camp is held in Chula Vista, California and lasts from January 6 through February 2. That session includes friendlies against Panama on January 27th and Costa Rica on February 2nd.

Newly appointed U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT) coach Gregg Berhalter had the following to say about the upcoming camp.

“Being in Chula Vista will help us create a team environment as we start to establish our culture and really be able to work on the details of our style of play. The facilities are outstanding and provide everything we need to accomplish our goals both on and off the field. They are accustomed to hosting elite athletes, so we believe this will be a great place for this group to get started.”

Garza has ten senior caps for the USMNT, including nine friendlies and one 2015 Gold Cup appearance. Most of his appearances occurred in 2014 and 2015. However, he appeared more recently in a 0-0 draw with Serbia in January of 2017.

Full 27-Man U.S. Roster for January Camp

GOALKEEPERS (4): Alex Bono (Toronto FC/CAN; 1/0), Sean Johnson (New York City FC; 5/0), Tyler Miller (LAFC; 0/0), Zack Steffen (Columbus Crew SC; 6/0)

DEFENDERS (10): Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas; 2/0), Greg Garza (FC Cincinnati; 10/0), Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake; 0/0), Nick Lima (San Jose Earthquakes; 0/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 2/0), Daniel Lovitz (Montreal Impact/CAN; 0/0), Mark McKenzie (Philadelphia Union; 0/0), Keegan Rosenberry (Colorado Rapids; 0/0), Auston Trusty (Philadelphia Union; 0/0), Walker Zimmerman (LAFC; 4/1)

MIDFIELDERS (10): Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids; 23/2), Paul Arriola (D.C. United; 17/2), Corey Baird (Real Salt Lake; 0/0), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC/CAN; 142/17), Russell Canouse (D.C. United; 0/0), Marky Delgado (Toronto FC/CAN; 6/0), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 5/1), Djordje Mihailovic (Chicago Fire; 0/0), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders FC; 5/0), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC; 11/0)

FORWARDS (3): Jeremy Ebobisse (Portland Timbers; 0/0), Christian Ramirez (LAFC; 0/0), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew SC; 40/6)

The opportunity for Garza is significant. Not only does he have the ability to make an impact during Berhalter’s first January camp, but he can compete to fill the recent void at left fullback for the USMNT.

In other news, MLS announced the schedule for the 2019 home openers today. Have your say on the first three games of FC Cincinnati’s season.

Stay tuned to Orange & Blue Press for more coverage of FC Cincinnati’s offseason and MLS roster build.

Image: Stephanie Romero

Lahoud, Konate Internationals – Africa Cup of Nations Qualification on Tragic Matchday 2

Both Mike Lahoud and Pa Konate participated in matchday 2 of African Cup of Nations qualifying on Sunday, September 9th.

Image: Ryan Meyer

Pa Konate and Mike Lahoud were absent from FC Cincinnati’s postponed match against Louisville City FC on Saturday. The pair represented two different countries, but didn’t see any playing time in the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers held on Sunday.

Mike Lahoud – Sierra Leone 🇸🇱

Mike Lahoud’s Sierra Leone fell 1-0 to Ethiopia at Hawassa International Stadium on Sunday. A 35th minute penalty kick by Getaneh Kebede gave Ethiopia the victory. Mike Lahoud was in the 18-man squad, but did not appear in the contest. In a shock result in the same group, African powerhouse Ghana fell to a shorthanded Kenya on Saturday. All four teams in Group F have 3 points after two matches, with Ghana leading the way on goal difference. Sierra Leone faces Ghana next on October 10th in Ghana.


Pa Konate – Guinea 🇬🇳

Pa Konate traveled but did not make the 18-man squad for Guinea. However, his new international side earned a 1-0 victory over the Central African Republic. Partizan Belgrade striker Seydouba Soumah scored the winner in the 65th minute. It was Konate’s first match for his father’s nation after playing his youth career and three friendlies for Sweden, where he was born. Guinea now leads Group H with 6 points. Their next match is at home against Rwanda on October 10th. That match falls between FC Cincinnati’s last two games of the season against Pittsburgh and Nashville SC. Konate shared the following scenes of his experience after the match.

Tragedy in Madagascar

A tragic situation in Madagascar overshadowed qualifying on matchday 2. One person was confirmed dead with at least 37 others injured in a stampede before the qualifier between Madagascar & Senegal in Antananarivo.

The finals of the 32nd Africa Cup of Nations will be held in June 2019 in Cameroon. Qualification for the tournament extends over 6 match days held between June of 2017 to March of 2019. The current set of fixtures represents matchday 2 of the qualification process. If these two players continue to be selected at the international level, they will play again in October and November of 2018, and March of 2019.

While it’s certainly a great honor for these players to represent their teams in an international competition, it must to be disappointing to travel that distance and not see any playing time. Stay tuned to Orange & Blue Press for more coverage of FC Cincinnati’s 2018 season.