The Orange & Blue Review!

Welcome to the Orange & Blue Review, the official podcast of FC Cincinnati! Hosted by Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec, get the latest news, interviews and buzz from the club – both on and off the field. Check back weekly for new episodes.


Episode 19 (August 25, 2020)
Happy matchday! In the latest edition of the Orange and Blue Review, hosts Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec preview Tuesday night’s matchup between FC Cincinnati and Chicago Fire FC.

Plus, the hosts interview The Cincinnati Enquirer beat reporter Patrick Brennan and discuss FCC’s rapid growth and covering a club during a pandemic.

Time | Segment
0:12 | The hosts preview FCC at Chicago tonight
4:26 | Charlie shares an update
8:31 | Interview with Pat Brennan begins
42:34 | Recapping the interview
43:46 | What it was like being at FCC’s home opener

Episode 18 (August 18, 2020)
To get ready for Friday night’s 2020 home opener, Caleb Stanko joins this week’s Orange and Blue Review to talk about the upcoming schedule, Jaap Stam’s coaching and more. Plus, Stanko takes you behind the scenes of what it’s like to be a player during a transfer window.

Additionally, hosts Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec break down FC Cincinnati’s latest trades and discuss the team’s transfer plans.

Time | Segment
0:12 | The hosts break down FCC's two trades on Monday
5:12 | What it could look like. signing a player in a pandemic
9:38 | Interview with Caleb Stanko begins
23:44 | Analyzing the interview
25:51 | Previewing Friday's match


Episode 17 (August 11, 2020)
Hosts Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec discuss the team returning to Nippert Stadium next week and what they’re looking forward to once the regular season resumes – again.

Plus, they speak with Jimmy McLaughlin to discuss the club’s fifth anniversary, which is Wednesday. McLaughlin reflects on the growth he’s seen from the club and its fanbase, and also explains why FCC might be at a turning point.

The hosts also discuss the team’s One Club, Community, One Goal initiative, which was unveiled on Monday to highlight the organization’s commitment to address racial disparities in Greater Cincinnati.

Time | Segment
1:12 | The hosts discuss FCC’s in-market return
6:24 | Interview segment with Jimmy McLaughlin begins
26:06 | The hosts analyze the interview and discuss the team’s anniversary
30:04 | Charlie and Alex talk about One Club, One Community, One Goal


Episode 16 (July 28, 2020)
In this week’s episode of the Orange and Blue Review, hosts Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec discuss FC Cincinnati’s journey to the Round of 16 and the growth they’ve seen under head coach Jaap Stam.

Interview guest Andrew Gutman opens up about the team adapting its identity and the biggest differences he’s seen between now and when he joined FCC last summer.

Additionally, Charlie and Alex preview the match against the Portland Timbers and what they expect.

Time | Segment
0:12 | The hosts discuss how FCC qualified for the knockout stage
5:26 | Andrew Gutman interview segment begins
20:15 | The hosts recap the interview and preview Tuesday’s game


Episode 15 (July 21, 2020)
In this week’s episode, hosts Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec dissect FC Cincinnati’s win over Atlanta United FC and preview Wednesday’s game against the New York Red Bulls.

Additionally, Alex interviews equipment managers Teddy Kerr and Andrew Kolb to discuss their behind-the-scenes roles and quirky player requests.

Time | Segment
0:12 | The hosts break down FCC’s first win of 2020
3:55 | Alex interviews Teddy Kerr and Andrew Kolb
23:56 | The hosts recap the interview and preview Wednesday’s game

Episode 14 (July 14, 2020)
In this week’s episode, general manager Gerard Nijkamp joins to discuss an under construction FC Cincinnati, expectations during the MLS is Back in Tournament and how the club is handling the top allocation spot.

Plus, Alex Stec shares what it was like inside the bubble as FCC’s game against Columbus Crew SC got postponed and handling a press conference at 2 a.m.

Time | Segment
0:12 | Charlie and Alex discuss FCC’s first game back
8:42 | Gerard Nijkamp interview begins
28:28 | The hosts recap. Nijkamp’s comments and discuss “behind the curtains” in the bubble


Episode 13 (July 7, 2020)
We’re days away from FC Cincinnati’s first MLS is Back Tournament match – and maybe years away from the Queen City hosting the 2026 FIFA World Cup at Paul Brown Stadium?

In episode 13, hosts Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec speak with Saad Abdul-Salaam ahead of Saturday night’s #HellisReal Derby. Plus, prominent soccer journalist Grant Wahl joins the show to discuss Cincinnati’s World Cup bid and the growth of soccer in this city.

Time | Segment
0:24 | Alex breaks down week one with FCC in The Bubble
6:53 | Interview with Saad Abdul-Salaam begins
17:35 | The hosts analyze the discussion with the defender
20:57 | Charlie and Alex discuss Cincinnati’s World Cup bid
23:04 | Interview with Grant Wahl begins
34:24 | The hosts preview FCC coverage ahead of Saturday’s kickoff


Episode 12 (June 30, 2020)
FC Cincinnati are in Orlando and host Alex Stec is there, too!

In this week’s episode, hosts Stec and Charlie Hatch discuss day one of FCC’s trip to the MLS is Back Tournament and what the trip entailed.

Plus, they interview Greg Garza on his thoughts entering the competition and why Cincinnati is in the toughest group.

Time | Segment
0:24 | Alex talks about being in quarantine down in Orlando
3:49 | The hosts talk about FCC’s Group E schedule
8:50 | Interview with Greg Garza
26:43 | Analysis of Garza’s interview and what’s upcoming for FCC


Episode 11 (June 23, 2020)
Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec discuss FC Cincinnati’s first week of training under head coach Jaap Stam and Jürgen Locadia’s loan extension.

Plus, the hosts interview new assistant coach Said Bakkati about his previous experience with Stam and talk about his first week in the U.S.

Time | Segment
0:20 | Alex describes how practices have been at MHTC
8:27 | Interview with Said Bakkati begins
25:29 | The hosts discuss the Bakkati interview and eMLS Cup


Special Juneteenth Episode (June 19, 2020)
To celebrate Juneteenth, Lizz Summers, FC Cincinnati’s VP of communications, led three interviews that became Conversation: Juneteenth and Racism.

Six FCC players – Saad Abdul-Salaam, Fatai Alashe, Zico Bailey, Joeseph-Claude Gyau, Kekuta Manneh and Kendall Waston – spoke with Summers about Juneteenth, its meaning in 2020 and the ongoing culture of racism in the U.S.

Their conversations were compiled into this special episode, which can be listened to below:

Time | Segment
0:00 | Charlie, Alex and Lizz discuss the idea around the Conversation project
5:28 | The interview begins
56:30 | Charlie, Alex and Lizz analyze what the players mentioned during the interview


Episode 10 (June 16, 2020)
Charlie and Alex discuss the MLS is Back Tournament and FC Cincinnati's Group E. Additionally, they interview former FCC forward Omar Cummings to discuss his role as club ambassador.

Time | Segment
0:12 | The hosts discuss full-team training sessions returning to Mercy Health Training Center
7:02 | Charlie and Alex talk to Omar Cummings
34:27 | The hosts recap the Cummings interview and discuss the MLS is Back Tournament


Episode 9 (June 9, 2020)
Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec interview their coworker, Darius Howard, about peaceful protests in Cincinnati and how we can all contribute to change. Howard is FC Cincinnati’s director of digital media.

Additionally, the hosts discuss MLS and the MLS Players Association ratifying the Collective Bargaining Agreement and returning to play in Orlando.

Time | Segment
0:32 | The hosts discuss racial equality and making a difference in Cincinnati
4:04 | Charlie and Alex talk about MLS’ return-to-play plan
6:26 | The hosts interview Darius Howard
23:54 | Analyzing the interview, previewing this week in FCC content


Episode 8 (June 3, 2020)
Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec interview general manager Gerard Nijkamp to discuss his one-year anniversary at FC Cincinnati.

Before that, however, the hosts discuss Black Lives Matter and how we can make a difference in our community.

Time | Segment
0:33 – Alex and Charlie talk about Black Lives Matter
5:10 – Interview with Gerard Nijkamp begins
27:16 – Analysis from Gerard’s interview


Episode 7 (May 26, 2020)
Newly appointed FC Cincinnati head coach Jaap Stam joins Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec for this week’s episode. The trio talk about another side of Stam: his family background, his hobbies and why he wants to move to Cincinnati – a place he’s never visited.

In addition to the Stam interview, Hatch and Stec also talk about the FCC Academy launching the Pre-Academy and an Under-19 team.

Time | Segment
0:31 | A rundown of the show
6:08 | Interview with Jaap Stam
22:19 | Analysis of the interview
24:44 | Discussion about the FCC Academy’s expanded player pathway


Episode 6 (May 19, 2020)
Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec interview Richey to discuss being a player during the pandemic, a potential league restart in Florida and what music he listens to while in standstill traffic.

Plus, the hosts chat about Jaap Stam’s name being linked to the FC Cincinnati coaching vacancy and how fans can help decide the seat design at West End Stadium.

Time | Segment
1:26 | Charlie and Alex discuss Jaap Stam being a “main candidate” in the FCC coaching search
7:10 | Interview with Spencer Richey begins
36:37 | The hosts analyze Richey’s interview
38:38 | How FCC fans can help choose the seat design at West End Stadium
39:45 | What to expect from FCC the rest of the week

Episode 5 (May 12, 2020)
Charlie and Alex are finally able to discuss on-and-off field news!

First, they spoke with Jeff Smith, the Sr. VP of Ticket Sales & Service, about the club’s launch of premium seating deposits at West End Stadium. We discuss the status of 2020 MLS tickets, West End Stadium clubs offerings and why FCC are offering an unparalleled experience in the current Cincinnati sports landscape.

Plus, we interview assistant coach Ivar van Dinteren about the players returning to the Mercy Health Training Center for individual exercise sessions. We also debated the possibility of five substitutions in MLS and what he’d do differently against Atlanta United FC in March. Tom Pettersson as a striker?

Time | Segment
0:35 | Rundown of the episode
1:51 | Interview with Jeff Smith begins
17:16 | Recapping Smith’s interview, previewing van Dinteren
41:42 | Recapping the van Dinteren interview
43:00 | What to expect from FCC this week

Episode 4 (May 5, 2020)
Alex Stec and Charlie Hatch discuss players slowly returning to the Mercy Health Training Center for the first time, in addition to recent West End Stadium news.

Plus, we interview FCC captain Kendall Waston about his new podcast, on spending time with family and his mom’s fight with coronavirus in New York City.

This week’s episode is the first with only one guest, but Waston’s remarks are honest and sincere – and funny!

Time | Segment
1:04 | The rundown of this week’s show
2:24 | On players individually beginning to return to the Mercy Health Training Center
4:51 | Alex reminds listeners to join FCC’s Trivia Tuesday tonight with Jeff Berding
8:15 | Interview segment with Kendall Waston begins
10:10 | Kendall discusses his upcoming podcast episode and his pet peeve with Costa Rican fans and the birth of “The Slap”
13:30 | Kendall talks about having weekends free
14:26 | Kendall tells the story of his mother’s fight with COVID-19
17:56 | Kendall talks about Mother’s Day ... two of them.
22:24 | Kendall talks about how his son has some definite ideas about soccer
30:24 | We chat about the new First Financial Club and more upcoming West End Stadium news

Episode 3 (April 28, 2020)
Alex Stec and Charlie Hatch hosted a great show full of exciting interviews with past and present FCC players. The first half of the episode is dedicated to Kekuta Manneh, who discussed his 2020 Ramadan experience during the current individual training situation. We also offered some cooking tips – and Charlie may or may not have told “Scooter” that he’s one of my favorite people to interview.

After that, speaking with former FCC midfielder Michael Lahoud in his first interview about the team since 2018. He talked about that championship season, about his future plans and his overall love and appreciation of FC Cincinnati, their supporters and the Queen City.

This is our longest show yet, but it’s packed with insightful interviews you won’t hear anywhere else!

Time | Segment
1:30 | Rundown of the show and highlight the two upcoming interviews
2:32 | Interview segment with Kekuta Manneh begins
4:12 | Kekuta provides some cooking tips and seasonings to try
7:30 | Kekuta tells us why he hates onions and he cried chopping them for FCC content!
8:15 | On how Ramadan’s been so far
10:15 | Kekuta on some of the challenges of this Ramadan in comparison to previous ones
19:00 | What it’s like shopping for food as a professional athlete during the stay-at-home order
25:30 | Alex and I recap Kekuta’s words and introduce the Michael segment
27:08 | Interview segment with Michael Lahoud begins
29:30 | Alex goes to get a bottle of wine out of her fridge but listeners can’t see it when she shows her Rosé off
31:35 | Michael on the 2018 coming together at the right time and place
34:30 | Michael discusses the depth on the 2018 squad
41:00 | What he remembers from lifting the USL Supporters’ Shield
45:00 | Michael on why he wants to visit Cincinnati soon
47:06 | Alex and I recap the interview
48:10 | What’s next for FCC coverage the rest of the week

Episode 2 (April 21, 2020)
Alex Stec and Charlie Hatch discuss how MLS academies could reshape after the end of the U.S. Development Academy, and talk to the one FCC player still playing soccer – but online!

To find out how the news impacts the FC Cincinnati Academy, they spoke with Larry Sunderland, FC Cincinnati’s director of player development, about the club’s support of youth soccer and how Sunderland is developing future leaders on and off the field.

The hosts also catch up with Fiddle, the club’s eMLS player, who just played with Kendall Waston in an epic first match in the eMLS Tournament Special against Chicago Fire FC on Sunday night. They ask Fiddle about some FIFA advice, which FCC player is better in real life than in the game and how Fiddle really, really wants to face Fatai Alashe!

Time | Segment
1:42 | Rundown of the show and discuss the major change for MLS academies and youth soccer across the country
3:09 | Interview segment with Larry Sunderland about the FCC Academy and the end of the U.S. Development Academy.
16:42 | Analyze Sunderland’s comments, his vision for youth soccer in Cincinnati and his insane connections!
19:02 | Interview segment with Fiddle about representing FC Cincinnati on FIFA, on player on primetime TV and eSports getting the credit they deserve.
35:38 | Charlie and Alex banter about Fiddle’s determination to play Fatai Alashe in FIFA.

Episode 1 (April 14, 2020)
In the debut episode, Charlie Hatch and Alex Stec discuss the unprecedented time we’re in, and bring the FCC faithful the latest info about the players, how they’re feeling and what the club is currently working on. Two guests join the first episode. Tom Gelehrter, the voice of FC Cincinnati, stops by to discuss how the club re-airs FCC Classics and what the experience has been like to this point. Siem de Jong is the first player interview, and he discusses what it’s like moving to a new team, only to have three training sessions before the season was suspended. He talks about how he’s handling the quarantine.

Time | Segment
05:35 | Interview segment with Tommy G on FCC Classics and second screening
16:47 | Reliving the week leading up to the home opener when the season was suspended
21:39 | Interview segment with Siem de Jong