CINvRSL-Match Preview

Match Preview: Club Hosts Real Salt Lake Under Friday Night Lights

The last few matches have produced moral victories for FC Cincinnati. Come Friday night against Real Salt Lake at Nippert Stadium, the hope is for more confidence and three points.

The Orange and Blue enter the game winless in their previous three matches but arrive with a renewed confidence. Last week, they lost 2-0 at league-leading LAFC, but Cincinnati looked strong defensively and created an abundance of attacking chances.

“If you’re creating chances like we are, we don’t have anything to worry about,” Head Coach Alan Koch said after the match. “We just need to make sure we’re capitalizing on the chances we create.”

Friday night is a good opportunity to do so.

FC Cincinnati rest seventh in the Eastern Conference standings – the last MLS Cup Playoffs spot. Salt Lake arrives eighth in the Western Conference. Statistically, it’s a matchup against even teams.

“We know they’re a good team,” Koch said. “We know there’s no easy games in this league and obviously they’ll come into our house with confidence after winning last weekend.”

But in a broader context, a good result against RSL at Nippert Stadium could go a long way for FCC moving forward.

After the match, Cincinnati play three straight on the road. By the time that stretch is complete, the expansion side will have played nine of its first 11 against 2018 playoff teams. They will also have completed almost one-third of the season

“We want to go out and play with confidence and embrace the opportunity to play at home,” Koch said. “We anticipate and hope we’ll have a full house.”

Match Info

FC Cincinnati vs. Real Salt Lake

Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET

Where: Nippert Stadium

Weather Forecast: Partly cloudy, 52 degrees

TV: WSTR Star64

Local Video Stream: FloFC 

Out of Market Video Stream: ESPN+

Local Radio: WDJO (99.5 FM | 107.9 FM | 1480 AM)

Audio Stream: TuneIn App,

Player to Watch and his Health Carousel Player Resume:

Opponent’s Player to Watch: forward Albert Rusnák

The Slovakia international started in Manchester City’s youth system and has become a nuisance for opposing backlines. Since 2017, the 24-year-old has 20 goals in 66 appearances.

Through six appearances this season, he already has two goals and an assist.

Club Connections

  • Eric Alexander played with Donny Toia at Montreal Impact in 2015. FCC coaches Yoann Damet and Jack Stern were part of the Impact’s organization at the time.
  • Former FC Cincinnati forward – and current club representative – Omar Cummings played with Kyle Beckerman for the Colorado Rapids in 2007.
  • Emery Welshman spent two years with the Real Salt Lake organization between 2015-16. He didn’t play for the MLS side, but he made 22 appearances for Real Salt Lake Monarchs in the USL. He scored six goals and provided two assists.
  • RSL’s Nick Besler was in the Portland Timbers organization between 2015-16. Fanendo Adi and Alvas Powell played for the Timbers at the time.
  • Frankie Amaya and David Ochoa have played together for the U.S. Under-20 National Team.
  • Forrest Lasso played with Justin Portillo on the Charleston Battery in 2016 and 2017. 
  • Director of Sports Medicine/Head Athletic Trainer Aaron Powell worked at Real Salt Lake from 2010-2015.
  • Assistant Athletic Trainer Marshall Stoddard spent six seasons with the Real Salt Lake organization.