If FC Cincinnati embark on another memorable Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup run, their most familiar opponent from the last four years will be their first obstacle.
The Orange and Blue host Louisville City FC on Wednesday night at Nippert Stadium in the fourth round of the U.S. Open Cup. This is the second meeting between the sides in the competition and their first fixture since FCC moved to MLS.
But for Cincinnati, it’s also more than just another rivalry match. For a team that has struggled to find consistency, the Open Cup is an opportunity for a fresh start that could lead to league momentum, too.
“It’s a new competition and we want to use that to bring some freshness back to the group,” Interim Head Coach Yoann Damet said. “In this competition, everything can happen. You can go far like we saw in the past with the run that we made two years ago.
“So, it’s a good challenge for the group. It’s going to bring some freshness and motivation and we’re looking forward to playing the game.”
This is the latest FCC have started in the Open Cup. Back when they were a USL club, their tournament run began in the second round. Advancing to the fourth round meant the chance to play an MLS club. Now in 2019, that’s the opportunity for Louisville.
For Cincinnati, it’s an opportunity to beat their rival, win for the first time in a month and look ahead to the fifth round as well as an MLS match against the LA Galaxy on June 22 at Nippert.
FC Cincinnati against Louisville City FC
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m.
Where: Nippert Stadium
Weather Forecast: Cloudy, 69 degrees
Opponent’s Player to Watch: Winger Magnus Rassmussen
Through 13 USL Championship matches this season, Rassmussen has six goals and an assist for City. FC Cincinnati fans might remember him from previous matchups as an attacking player with passing and scoring capabilities.
- Ben Lundt is currently on loan from Cincinnati to Louisville City FC.
- Pat McMahon and Luke Spencer played previously for FCC. McMahon made 31 appearances for the Orange and Blue between 2016-17. Spencer made 12 appearances across all competitions in 2016.
- Emmanuel Ledesma played alongside Brian Holt and Lucky Mkosana at the New York Cosmos in 2017.
- Fatai Alashe played with Shaun Francis on the San Jose Earthquakes from 2015-17.
- Darren Mattocks and Alvas Powell on the Jamaica National Team’s 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup roster with Speedy Williams.