FC Cincinnati exit Concacaf Champions Cup despite champion quality performance


Every moment was an adventure, every whistle a heart palpitation. But The Orange and Blue walked into the mountains and emerged with pride. Ultimately, it was not enough to earn passage to the quarterfinals, falling 2-1 (3-1 on aggregate) to CF Monterrey and ending FC Cincinnati’s 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup run.

With their backs against the wall on Thursday night, FC Cincinnati went full force into enemy territory, starting their best XI with the intent of dethroning the leaders of Liga MX, Concacaf, and the favorites in the tournament. Facing a hostile environment at Estadio BBVA, FCC looked unphased and performed as the name of the tournament suggested. In what was perhaps their most physical game of the season, FC Cincinnati stood their ground.

Despite going down another goal in the aggregate scoring at the end of the first half, Luciano Acosta answered the call in the 47th minute. The reigning MVP delivered the club’s first goal of the series on a spectacular dribble and shot that beat Monterrey’s keeper to his right as the ball tucked in neatly to the side netting.

With the game on the line multiple times, Roman Celentano and his defensive stable of Matt Miazga, Miles Robinson and Ian Murphy fought tooth and nail for every inch. The center backs battled in the air and on the ground with each contributing at least one spectacular diving moment to thwart certain peril. 

FC Cincinnati could not find the final push as CF Monterrey retreated into a defensive stance to see out the game. Aaron Boupendza and Corey Baird both had shots go off the post, a Boupendza header on target was saved and an Acosta second goal was denied by just the keeper's fingernails.

With their time in the Concacaf Champions Cup now done, The Orange and Blue turn their attention to MLS play and their Supporters’ Shield defense exclusively.

The team will continue their road trip to Foxborough, Massachusetts for a road match with the New England Revolution on Sunday. The Orange and Blue are undefeated in league play, earning five points through three matches, including a 2-1 road victory over Chicago Fire FC. Both FCC and the Revolution will be playing on short rest as New England visited Costa Rica Thursday for their second leg in the Concacaf Champions Cup.