Down The Hatch: July 9

Down The Hatch

We’re officially two days away from the #HellisReal Derby – and FC Cincinnati’s first match in the MLS is Back Tournament. It’s a fresh start for the players and first match under head coach Jaap Stam.

We all have questions, and hopefully this mailbag is a source of answers. Thank you for all the responses, and don’t forget you can submit one here or by tweeting at me.

Paulstepro: How long is Locadia out?

There’s no exact timeline other than head coach Jaap Stam saying Jürgen Locadia could miss “a couple weeks” with a thigh injury.

If he can’t play Saturday night in the #HellisReal Derby, it’ll be interesting to see who replaces the Dutchman. FCC have multiple options, whether it’s Brandon Vazquez, Siem de Jong or someone else.

Although having your DP forward absent from the match isn’t ideal, the team has other promising options.

Bennettcaruso25: How is the squad dealing with COVID

Knock on wood there haven’t been any positive cases among the team and staff, and hopefully that continues.

With safety paramount, that means there’s little interaction between other players outside of practices or team meals. Players seem to be enjoying the bonding time together, although it’s difficult being so far from home and from their families.

YoungboyJay101: Where is Jaap Stam?

Stam is with the team in Orlando and has been leading training sessions since he and assistant coach Said Bakkatai arrived in the U.S.A last month.

He’ll be on the touchline Saturday night when FCC play against Columbus Crew SC.

Lucas._valle: How long are practices?

Practices were long when Jaap Stam arrived in Cincinnati, averaging over two hours. But since the team went to Orlando, the league mandates a strict 90-minute limit. While that means less time spent on the field, that also means Stam and company are trying to maximize their time.

Risscrackers: Do Black players feel supported by FCC team/mgmt/owners/fans with their BLM response?

Last week, Kekuta Manneh was asked this during a virtual press conference, and he said the $250,000 commitment from the ownership group toward programs addressing racial disparities was a good start to continue supporting the team’s Black players and the community.

I can’t speak for any of our players – and I won’t. But what I will say is based on previous interviews, players want actions – similar to last week’s contribution – that fight the systemic racism and social injustices that have plagued our country for four centuries.

As Manneh said, everyone can always do more. 

Ripplohchiropractic: What is FrankieFadez going rate?

I need to find out! Also, he’s got a legit slogan, but is it factual?

“They come in for haircuts and leave with blessings.”