RECAP | Vazquez first career hat-trick leads FC Cincinnati past Chivas, clinch Central 3 group with 3-1 win

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FC Cincinnati have advanced to the knockout stages of the inaugural Leagues Cup competition following their 3-1 win over Chivas Guadalajara Friday afternoon at TQL Stadium. With the result, FC Cincinnati have won Leagues Cup Central Group 3 and moved on to the knockout stage. They await the runner-up of the Central 4 group, which features Toluca (1st place, 3 points), Nashville SC (2nd place, 3 points), and Colorado Rapids (3rd place, 0 points). The match between Toluca and Colorado on Monday, July 31 will determine who advances from that group.

Brandon Vazquez, who replaced Sergio Santos in the starting lineup after the Brazilian was a late scratch following warmups Thursday night, wasted no time in getting the Orange and Blue out to a 1-0 lead in the second minute.

Aaron Boupendza assisted on the goal, recovering a loose ball in the attacking third and finding Vazquez near the edge of the box. A quick touch from Vazquez created enough space for the forward to curl a beautiful shot past two Chivas defenders and goalkeeper José Rangel.

Vazquez would earn his brace, and double the Orange and Blue’s lead, just six minutes later in the 8th minute after getting free in the box on a dangerous Cincinnati attack. Álvaro Barreal played the final ball in, delivering a quick, low cross in towards Vazquez who was able to redirect Barreal’s pass into the back of the net.

Chivas Guadalajara would be reduced to 10-men during first half stoppage time after Gilberto Sepúlveda brought Aaron Boupendza down after getting in behind the Chivas defense. Sepúlveda was initially shown yellow, but a VAR check determined Sepúlveda impeded a clear goal scoring opportunity. It would serve as the last action of the half as FC Cincinnati carried a 2-0 lead into the break.

The two sides played 15 minutes of the second half before inclement weather forced the game into a delay. After a three-and-a-half-hour delay, the match was suspended and rescheduled to resume Friday at 2 p.m. ET.

It was an instant response from Chivas upon the match restart in the 61st minute. Cristian Calderón delivered a long throw into the Cincinnati penalty area to begin play. Antonio Briseño was able to rise above the defense and flicked Calderón’s throw up and over Alec Kann.

Vazquez restored Cincinnati’s two goal lead with his first career hat-trick in the 73rd minute. A similar move to Vazquez second goal led to the chance with Vazquez once again getting open in the box before Barreal laced a perfect ball through the box that Vazquez ran onto and finished with a sliding shot.

Vazquez’s hat-trick puts the forward on four tournament goals through two matches and has him tied for a Leagues Cup lead in the category. Barreal’s two assists tie fellow Argentine Luciano Acosta for a team high in the tournament.

Tickets for FC Cincinnati’s knockout stage match on August 4th will go on sale Monday, July 31 at 10 a.m. ET and can be purchased here. Cincinnati will host the runner up of the Central 4 group (Nashville SC, Toluca, Colorado Rapids) at TQL Stadium with kickoff time to be determined at a later date. Catch all of the inaugural Leagues Cup action on MLS Season Pass on the Apple TV App.

Chivas Guadalajara vs. FC Cincinnati
Date: July 27, 2023
Competition: Leagues Cup, Group Stage
Venue: TQL Stadium
Attendance: 25,143
Kickoff: 8:09 p.m. ET
Weather: 80 degrees, cloudy

CDG: 0-1-1

CIN: 2-1-3

CDG – Antonio Briseño (Cristian Calderón) 61’

CIN – Brandon Vazquez (Aaron Boupendza) 2’, Brandon Vazquez (Álvaro Barreal) 8’, Brandon Vazquez (Álvaro Barreal) 73’


  • FC Cincinnati’s win against Chivas Guadalajara sees the Orange and Blue win the Central 3 group. FC Cincinnati (1-0-1, 5 points) will host the runner up of the Central 4 group. Current standings in Central Group 4 are as follows; Toluca (1-0-0, 3 points), Nashville SC (1-1-0, 3 points) and Colorado Rapids (0-1-0, 0 points)
  • Brandon Vazquez’s leads all FC Cincinnati players with four goals through two matches of Leagues Cup play. Vazquez brought the Orange and Blue level with Sporting Kansas City in the team’s first group stage match on Sunday.
  • Vazquez’s hat-trick is the first of his career and moves the forward into a tie for the most goals in this year’s Leagues Cup competition.
  • The Orange and Blue have now seen their opposition reduced to 10-men in two straight Leagues Cup matches. Kansas City’s Alan Pulido was shown straight red in the 30th minute of Sunday’s contest while Gilberto Sepúlveda was sent off in the 45’+3 minute of tonight’s match.
  • Aaron Boupendza picked up his first assist for FC Cincinnati against Chivas. The recent Designated Player signing now has two goal contributions in his first three matches with FC Cincinnati.

CDG: José Rangel, Cristian Calderón, Jesús Orozco, Gilberto Sepúlveda, Alan Mozo (Jesús Sánchez, 80’), Erick Gutiérrez (Isaác Brizuela, 90’+3), Jonathan Padilla (Antonio Briseño, 46’), Fernando Beltrán, Víctor Guzmán (Ronaldo Cisneros, 80’), Ricardo Marín (Ernesto Vega, 46’), Roberto Alvarado

Substitutes not used: Miguel Jiménez, Oscar Whalley, Pavel Pérez, Manuel Mayorga, González Fernando, Alan Torres, Juan Brigido

Head Coach: Veljko Paunovic

CIN: Alec Kann, Álvaro Barreal (Bret Halsey, 90’), Ian Murphy, Matt Miazga, Nick Hagglund, Ray Gaddis (Alvas Powell, 89’), Marco Angulo (Junior Moreno, 76’), Obinna Nwobodo, Luciano Acosta (Malik Pinto, 89’), Aaron Boupendza (Yuya Kubo, 61’), Brandon Vazquez

Substitutes not used: Roman Celentano, Paul Walters, Joey Akpunonu, Yerson Mosquera, Arquimides Ordoñez, London Aghedo

Head Coach: Pat Noonan

Shots: 11 / 13
Shots on Goal: 1 / 6
Saves: 3 / 0
Corner Kicks: 15 / 3
Fouls: 11 / 9
Offside: 1 / 0
46.1 / 53.9

CDG – Gilberto Sepúlveda (Red card) 45’+3
CDG – Alan Mozo (Yellow card) 75’
CIN – Marco Angulo (Yellow card) 75’
CIN – Álvaro Barreal (Yellow card) 75'

Referee: Benjamin Pineda
Ast. Referees: Juan Carlos Mora, William Chow
Fourth Official: Julio Luna
VAR: Allen Chapman
Tristley Bassue

FC Cincinnati’s full 2023 regular season schedule can be viewed HERE. Fans can visit HERE for FC Cincinnati’s 2023 home platform match schedule. FC Cincinnati matches air live on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV, the unprecedented subscription service features every MLS regular season, playoff and Leagues Cup match.

Single Match Tickets can be purchased now at or by calling (513) 977-5425 (KICK). For more information about Group Tickets and Premium hospitality options, including suites and all-inclusive experiences, call (513) 763-1025.

FC Cincinnati fans can place deposits on 2024 SeasonTickets at or by calling (513) 977-5425 (KICK). Visit HERE to learn more information. 

For up-to-the-minute information about FC Cincinnati, visit the team’s official website at, or follow the team on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at @FCCincinnati. Additionally, fans are encouraged to download the team’s new official mobile app on iOS or Android for instant access to mobile tickets, team content and match notifications.