Despite conceding two goals 15 minutes into last Saturday’s match against the LA Galaxy, the final synopsis from the game was a positive performance that saw FC Cincinnati quiet a world-class forward, build from the back and create opportunities from the midfield.
Now, the biggest question entering Saturday afternoon’s match at Minnesota United FC is whether or not the Orange and Blue can replicate that performance.
“For us, we’re going to try and take the positive things that we did from LA and try to fix the mistakes we made and hopefully get a result,” center back Nick Hagglund said. “I feel like starting from the back in our buildup play, getting to create chances and be in crossing positions, that was good. Hopefully we can continue that and be more clinical in the final third.”
On Saturday, FC Cincinnati will have to be more clinical with limited resources.
Allan Cruz, Darren Mattocks, Alvas Powell and Kendall Waston are still competing in the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup, so the earliest the players could be available – if Jamaica or Costa Rica lose their next match – would be against the Houston Dynamo next Saturday night at Nippert Stadium.
Greg Garza (calf), Roland Lamah (hamstring) and Jimmy McLaughlin (ACL surgery) are all unavailable against MNUFC, while Fanedo Adi and Fatai Alashe are nursing hamstring injuries and are listed as questionable for Saturday.
Additionally, Leo Bertone will serve a one-match ban for yellow card accumulation.
The Orange and Blue fielded an incomplete roster card for the first time against a league opponent in club history last week when only 17 of the usual 18 spots were utilized. With Alashe’s injury and Bertone’s suspension, that number looks to shrink this week – instead of grow. To assist with the workload, the club recalled rookie Logan Gdula from his loan with the Hartford Athletic in the USL Championship on Tuesday.
FC Cincinnati at Minnesota United FC
Kickoff: 4 p.m. ET (3 p.m. CT)
Where: Allianz Field (St. Paul, Minn.)
Weather Forecast: Partly Cloudy, 90 degrees
Video Stream: WatchESPN
Local Radio: WDJO (99.5 FM | 107.9 FM | 1480 AM)
Audio Stream: TuneIn App, fccincinnati.com
Player to Watch and his Health Carousel Player Resume
Opponent’s Player to Watch: Forward Darwin Quintero
The Colombian has five goals and three assists through 15 MLS appearances so far this season. It’s worth noting four of the goals came from penalty kicks, however.
While he joined MNUFC from Club America last March, he didn’t play in the 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Cup meeting between Minnesota and FC Cincinnati at Nippert Stadium last June. After a 0-0 draw through 120 minutes, the visitors advanced to the fifth rounds via penalty kicks.
- Justin Hoyte and Vito Mannone played at Arsenal from 2006-08.
- Darren Mattocks and Michael Boxall were at Vancouver Whitecaps FC together in 2012.
- Interim Head Coach Yoann Damet and Goalkeeper Coach Jack Stern were in the Montreal Impact organization with Eric Miller in 2014-15.
- While Fanendo Adi and Alvas Powell were at the Portland Timbers in 2017-18, Lawrence Odom was also there. Mattocks was a Timbers forward in 2017, too.
- Hassan Ndam and Dayne St. Clair were in the New York Red Bulls organization last year.
- Logan Gdula and Collin Martin were on loan at the Hartford Athletic together from their parent clubs.