Yup, there’s another home match this weekend. However, unlike our last match, it not only counts for something other than city and club pride, but there are major playoff implications at stake, too.
It’s our first ever 80s Night, sponsored by Curly's BBQ! We’ll be pumping 80s hits all night long, with LDNL live on Sheakley Lawn pregame and our in-house DJ playing your favorites in the stadium too. We'll also be sharing throwback pictures of our players and staff, and are encouraging fans to do the same on Twitter using the hashtag #FCC80s for a chance to see your picture on the Nippert Stadium big screen!
Visiting Cincinnati this weekend will be our USL Eastern Conference foes from upstate New York, the formerly raging Rhinos of Rochester.
FCC: Things continue to trend upwards for an Orange & Blue side that now find themselves in fifth place in the East. After posting three losses in our opening month of league play, the boys have lost the same amount over the last three. Since the beginning of May, we’ve gone 8-3-4 in league play – when looking at all competitions, that jumps to 10-4-4 with our only additional loss coming to Spanish giants Valencia. The improvement in form has seen the team place itself squarely in the playoff discussion, and back in contention for a home playoff match, too.
RR: While we’ve played 18 times over the last three months, the Rhinos have had the benefit of playing two matches fewer than the Orange & Blue. And though they’ve performed admirably over that time, their 5-2-6 record in the league reveals a form not quite as hot as our own. Of note, however, is that the Rhinos are just 1-2-5 on the road in 2017. Despite all of that, they sit just one place behind us in the table with an additional two matches in hand.
"We are looking forward to locking horns with a top class team in Rochester. We know it will be a tough challenge, but our team continues to improve every week. Our group are confident and have been playing very well in recent weeks. We look forward to building on last week’s games against Harrisburg and Valencia. We fortunately were able to get all of our players minutes and look forward to seeing who continues to excel in the Orange & Blue."
- Head Coach Alan Koch
FCC: Though Djiby and his 11 league goals so far this campaign are attracting the most attention, one of those doing work in his shadow are now rounding into some impressive form of their own. Deserving of further attention has been wide-man Jimmy McLaughlin, who tallied his second goal of the season last weekend against Harrisburg after creating a bucket-load of good looks over the last few weeks.
RR: Though the Rhinos have a solid record so far this season, the struggles they have had have come at the offensive end of the pitch. Ironically, it’s their defense – which has posted the second most shutouts in the league this year – which is also contributing the most to their attack right now too. German defender Wal Fall (#17) leads the team in scoring with four goals and an assist, and three other defenders tacking on a goal apiece too.
Rochester have not been kind to us in our three previous meetings. In 2016, we lost away 1-2 and drew 1-1 at home. This year, we started similarly with a 0-1 loss away. Here’s hoping we don’t continue last year’s trend with our home fixture this weekend.
Though it’s been quite warm, wet and muggy over the last few days here in the Queen City, the weekend forecast is looking aces at the moment. Temperatures are expected to be right around 80° F at kickoff and will tail off into mid-70’s by the full-time whistle. But even better than that: not a drop of rain is expected – so hopefully no more rain delays!
This weekend’s match will be broadcast live on Star 64 (WSTR). Most local providers’ station information can be found below:
Over the Air: Channel 12.2
Cincinnati Bell Fioptics: Channel 17 (SD) or 517 (HD)
Spectrum/TWC (OH): Channel 20/13 (SD) or 989 (HD)
Spectrum/TWC (KY): Channel 20 (SD) or 989 (HD)
DirecTV: Channel 25
DISH: Not Available
Not in the local viewing area? No problem! Every match in the USL is available to stream as well, and this match is available for free on YouTube.