FC Cincinnati 2

FC Cincinnati 2 carry momentum into Saturday clash against Crown Legacy FC

20240428 FCC2vsPHIii Match 109

FC Cincinnati 2 and Crown Legacy FC will meet for the first time this season on Saturday, May 4, for a late afternoon match at Scudamore Field at NKU Soccer Stadium. Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. ET. The Orange and Blue enter the weekend fifth in the Eastern Conference following a 3-1 win against Philadelphia Union II and have the chance to break into the top four.

Gates will open at 3 p.m. ET, and tickets for the match can be redeemed with a SeatGeek account through the FC Cincinnati app. The match will also stream live on mlsnextpro.com.


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HEATING UP – With their 3-1 win over Philadelphia Union II on Sunday, FC Cincinnati 2 have put together back-to-back wins in this young season to stay in the heat of the playoff race. The Orange and Blue have won three of their last four and will look to make it three in a row against Crown Legacy FC on Saturday afternoon.

OFFENSIVE PROWESS – FC Cincinnati 2 are rolling in attack after putting three goals past Union II on Sunday. The Orange and Blue have scored seven goals over their last two MLS NEXT Pro matches and are tied for the sixth-most goals scored in MLS NEXT Pro.

The Orange and Blue have been held without a goal just once this season and have scored multiple goals in four of their last five.

HAVE A DAY, DADO – Gerardo “Dado” Valenzuela scored his first professional hat trick Sunday afternoon against Philadelphia and is the first player to score three goals in a single match for FC Cincinnati 2. The FC Cincinnati midfielder’s nine shots tied an MLS NEXT Pro season-high for a single match and were a career-best for Valenzuela.

QUIETLY PRODUCING – While Valenzuela stole the show against Union II, forward Ben Stitz has helped keep the offense humming through the early season. Stitz earned an assist on Valenzuela’s third goal against Philadelphia and has picked up a goal contribution in four of the team’s last five matches.

Stitz’s three assists lead the team, and his five total goal contributions through seven appearances are just two behind his 2023 total.

It has been a slow start for Crown Legacy FC, as the club navigates their second season in MLS NEXT Pro. CLFC finished 2023 with 66 points, tied with Colorado Rapids 2 for the most points in MLSNP, but have stumbled out of the gates in 2024. Held winless through the opening five matches of the season, CLFC earned their first win in a 3-1 win against New York City FC II this past Sunday and will look to change the tide of their sophomore campaign.

Crown Legacy FC are looking for answers up front, as the team’s top five goal scorers from 2023 have yet to appear this season. First-team forwards Patrick Agyemang, Brandon Cambridge and Iuri Tavares, who scored a combined 26 goals a season ago, have been absent from the CLFC roster. David Poreba, who led the team in appearances in 2023, joined Chicago Fire FC II on loan while Vinicius Mello signed with FK Čukarički of the Serbian SuperLiga.

Midfielder Nicholas Scardina leads the team with two goals and two assists and was a key piece of Crown Legacy FC’s success in 2023, making 25 appearances, all starts, and was one of three players to play over 2,000 minutes. Scardina has already matched his offensive production from a season ago as the midfielder is set to be a more attacking threat in 2024.

Crown Legacy FC added two new defenders to a Crown Legacy backline that was nothing short of dominant in 2023. Led by João Pedro, the CLFC defense allowed just 34 goals in 28 matches, the second fewest goals allowed in MLS NEXT Pro. Assane Souleymane Ouedraogo joins CLFC from FC San Pedro while Willian Sangoquiza arrives on loan from América de Quito with the pair of defenders bolstering an already strong unit.

José Tavares returns as Head Coach of Crown Legacy FC after an impressive inaugural season at the helm. Tavares led CLFC to 19 wins, tied for a MLS NEXT Pro record, and a trip to the Eastern Conference Semifinals.