CINCINNATI, Ohio — In front of a record crowd of 35,061, FC Cincinnati played host to Crystal Palace FC of the English Premier League, the highest attended soccer match ever in Ohio. Crystal Palace claimed a 2-0 victory over FCC with goals from Jordan Mutch and Wilfred Zaha. The international friendly between the two sides was the first ever for FC Cincinnati, and the first of its kind at Nippert Stadium.
Mutch opened the scoring for CPFC in the eighth minute of play. The Eagles Hiram Boateng broke free down the center of the field and played the ball to Frazier Campbell who would direct the ball to Mutch in stride. Mutch finished the ball in the top left corner past FCC goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt.
"From the big picture you always want to get players to develop," FCC Head Coach John Harkes said. "I thought our boys played really well. They created chances. Overall, big picture, the guys played really well. It was a great occasion for everyone, the city, the club, everyone. We are a very proud city and get behind our club FCC."
Crystal Palace would notch its second goal in the sixty-eigth minute. Andros Townsend would play the ball cross-field to Zaha. Zaha collected the ball and dribbled past Omar Mohamed hitting the ball off the far post to go in.
"It's a tough, tough game and we got the right goals at the right time and came away with a victory," Crystal Palace Manager Alan Pardew. "It was quite exciting and some top moments for the crowd to enjoy. The whole time we have been here it has been energized. Personally, I really hope that we can come back here."
The match against FCC marked Crystal Palace's second of three American friendlies the club will play.
FCC forward, Omar Cummings, who played his collegiate soccer at the University of Cincinnati was impressed with the game's atmosphere.
"Everything that has gone on in Cincinnati is absolutely beautiful," Cummings said. "The start of the game, the atmosphere, the roar of the fans, just to see that in Cincinnati was excellent."
FCC will host it's next match on Wed. July 20th, against New York Red Bulls II at 7:00pm.