Updated: Jun 27
It wasn’t pretty, but Fc Cincinnati was able to secure a win against Chicago Wednesday night. It was another match that began with Fc Cincy taking charge of the match and statistically leading in every major category by halftime. FCC took the lead on a inch perfect free kick by Alvaro Barreal. It was another step toward stardom for the 20 year old Argentinian winger, who has stepped up and been a bright spot so far this season. Barreal plays with high energy and is increasingly getting himself into dangerous positions offensively and is showing the confidence to take the shot when in those positions.
The goal is another example of FCC’s capabilities on set pieces. One could argue that the club has been most dangerous during those set pieces, and also that they haven’t been very dangerous otherwise. Wednesday was another game where FCC produced around 20 shots with many being on goal, but few really troubled Chicago’s keeper. Again, the shots were most often from distance. It shows that Fc Cincy still struggle to find that extra pass, and when they fail to do so, they rocket a shot from distance. That lack of extra pass appears to be what is keeping Striker Brenner from getting on the score sheet. The young Brazilian has been more active creating chances for others rather than being set up for his own. While Wednesday’s win moved FCC up two spots and out of the cellar of the eastern conference, if the team can find that extra pass and turn those long shots into close finishes, they may move themselves safely away from the bottom. They may even inch towards the top ten. But lets not get ahead of ourselves.
While FCC played very well for the first 50+ minutes wednesday, the last 40+ were on the back foot. Chicago began pressing and flipped the script on FCC. They were a foot way from stealing a point at the death, before being called offside. Personally, while relieved with the reversal, my hand still hurt from slamming it down in frustration. That being said, a win is a win and that one was sorely needed.
Tonight is another one of those games. Even in a win, Fc Cincy didn’t quite deter the naysayers. The cries to start all over by firing Jaap Stam and/or Gerard Nijkamp continue to be heard. It may persuade the front office however, if they were even considering such a move in the first place. What tonight really provides, is a chance for the club to take another step forward. A step away from the last two dismal seasons. Tonight they face a Toronto team in disarray. Toronto is 0-4-1 in their last five games. That doesn’t mean that this match will be easy however.
If Fc Cincinnati really wants to show that they‘re a club on the rise, they need to win and do so convincingly. They must find that extra pass (hopefully to Brenner) and they must show the ability to put a match away. What doesn’t help is the short break between matches and the fact that the team spent several hours trapped at an airport after their win. Even against a struggling team, tonight will be no walk in the park. For a team that has been clawing and scratching to escape the cellar, wednesday night they climbed the ladder. A win tonight, especially a convincing one, would allow them to step out into the light.
By: Rob Burkhardt