With sold-out crowd behind them, Luciano Acosta and FC Cincinnati dispatch the Colorado Rapids in a record setting 2-1 victory

20240427 FCCvsCOL Match JG 181

CINCINNATI - In front of a sell out crowd of 25,513 at TQL Stadium Saturday night, Luciano Acosta further etched his name in FC Cincinnati history as the captain and MLS MVP not only led his club to victory but also scored his 44th goal with The Orange and Blue, surpassing Brandon Vazquez for the most goals in club history across all competitions en route to beating the Colorado Rapids 2-1.

By curling a shot around Colorado goalkeeper Zack Steffen, Acosta earned his fourth goal of the 2024 MLS season and fifth across all competitions this year. Playing a give-and-go with striker Corey Baird, Acosta received a pass from Luca Orellano and then tapped off a pass to Baird before running towards the net. The forward hit the captain perfectly in stride and Acosta would not be denied, giving FC Cincinnati the lead in the 42 minute.

While it took over 40 minutes to break through, the match was all FC Cincinnati in the first half, winning possession of greater than 55 percent in all five minute intervals except for one in the half. FCC also earned six on-target shots to Colorado’s zero, and 1.6 expected goals (xG) to Colorado’s 0.5.

Colorado’s first chance on target came in the second half when the Rapids pushed quickly on the break and left just Matt Miazga, Miles Robinson and Alec Kann on the defense against four Rapids attackers. The pressure from the center backs forced a Rafael Navvaro shot from distance and Kann was there to punch it away and neutralize the threat.

FC Cincinnati would double their lead in the second half on a very pretty chipped shot from Corey Baird, earning his first goal for FC Cincinnati in the 64 minute. Assisted by Orellano, the Argentine sprung his fellow newcomer forward and Baird took the keeper as deep as possible, waiting for him to rush out to him before chipping the ball over his head to the back of the net.

The goal was Baird’s third goal contribution in 2024 after earning an assist earlier in the game. iI was Orellano’s first assist of the season and his second contribution on the year in as many games.

Colorado would get one back in the 72 minute of the match on a headed corner kick from defender Moïse Bombito to make it 2-1.

FCC would see out the match with seven minutes of added time, twice making attempts on net to try to secure the insurance goal. Late match substitutes Aaron Boupendza and Yamil Asad both took shots from distance that forced the Colorado keeper to make extraordinary saves.

They could not earn the third goal, but the subs did see out the match as the combo of Malik Pinto, Kipp Keller, Asad and Boupendza all worked to keep possession and see out the clock before the whistle was blown.

With the win, FC Cincinnati improved to 5-2-3 with 18 points and improved their home record to 2-1-2. As things stand, FCC finish the night alone in second place in the Eastern Conference only behind Inter Miami CF by three points but have the game in hand. In the Supporters’ Shield Table, FCC is in a three way tie for second with Real Salt Lake and LA Galaxy.

The return home for FC Cincinnati after a two week road stint will be short lived as FCC will hit the road again for two matches before their next time hosting at TQL Stadium. The Orange and Blue will head to Florida for a match with Orlando City SC at Inter&Co Stadium just outside the most magical place on earth. They will then return to Ohio and drive up I-71 for the Hell is Real derby with Columbus Crew. The next time FCC host, they will welcome recent foes Atlanta United FC at TQL Stadium on May 15.