FC Cincinnati beat the Richmond Kickers 2-0 on a warm evening in front of 21,769. An early goal from Djiby Fall and a late converted penalty by Aodhan Quinn led Cincinnati to victory.
Tonight’s win moves Cincinnati up to sixth place with 24 points (6-6-6) and three points behind the Tampa Bay Rowdies for the fourth position and a home playoff match.
Djiby scored in the third minute after an incredible ball from Kenny Williams that landed perfectly in front of the box. Djiby just set his feet and fired it past the keeper. A straight red card in the 87’ from Richmond’s Fred Owusu Sekyre after he threw an elbow into the face of Aodhan Quinn gave Cincinnati a man advantage. Then a stoppage time penalty due to a handball gave Quinn the opportunity to put Cincinnati up by two and ice the match.
Coach Koch commented on the match, “Great result for us, I was very happy with the performance. Scary game because when you are on top as much as were today, a lot of the time it takes one moment and before you know it you slipped up.”
Cincinnati completely dominated from the kickoff through the halftime whistle. Djiby put a corner just over the bar in the second minute and then gave his team the lead in the third.
After the goal Cincinnati controlled the ball for long periods of time and kept Richmond’s chances to a minimum. Their best chance of the first half came from a free kick from Raul Gonzalez from 23 yards out but the shot hit the wall and was cleared successfully by Cincinnati.
Jimmy McLaughlin had a fantastic chance after a good long ball from Paul Nicholson sent McLaughlin into the box where the shot was directly at the keeper. Unfortunately for Jimmy he went near post, if he goes far post Andrew Wiedeman could potentially have tapped it home.
Djiby almost got his second of the night hitting the crossbar with a thunderous shot but he was ruled offside late in the first.
The second half started with much of the same from Cincinnati, absolute domination with chances being saved or just wide. McLaughlin put a curler on target that took a diving save from Richmond’s keeper Matt Turner.
Wiedeman put a shot on target but again right a Turner in the 52. Another good pass over the top of the defense pass from Walker set up the chance.
A few more good shots were taken from McLaughlin but like the rest there was no getting him a goal.
Then Cincinnati’s wheels fell off for an eight minute stretch when the ball was kept in their defensive third with a few shots coming dangerously close to going in after deflections. A handful of fouls allowed free kicks that were in dangerous areas luckily the Richmond shooters put them either into the wall or crossed poorly allowing half clearances to somewhat reset the defense.
Cincinnati was still shaky late bringing Wiedeman off for midfielder Quinn who had an almost immediate impact due to drawing the red card from Owusu Sekyere. Quinn was playing Owusu Sekyere physically in the midfield, fouling him at the center circle and as Owusu Sekyere he threw an elbow at Quinn’s face drawing a straight red from the official who was feet away from the incident.
After the red Cincinnati was able to salt away the time and got to ball into the Richmond box where a hard shot from Danni Konig was saved by the keeper, but redirected directly into the arm of Braeden Troyer for a penalty. Quinn stepped up and buried the penalty, but Konig was ruled to be in the box too early and it had to be retaken. Quinn then stepped back up and fired into the opposite corner of the net to seal the three points for Cincinnati.
News and Notes
Cincinnati has played 13 matches in 53 days due to their US Open Cup run. Coach Koch was very adamant to bring this up during the postgame press conference. He commented on this run being, “I’ve never been though that before, I’d somebody to tell me someone who has. To show the endurance and character our group showed to get through this is nothing short of remarkable.”
Djiby scored his ninth league goal tonight in 12 appearances. Bringing him to 12 across all competitions in 15 appearances continuing his impressive run of form.
Jimmy McLaughlin can’t buy a goal right now having great chances but he hasn’t scored since May 6. Coincidentally the last time Cincinnati played Richmond.
Cincinnati got a huge three points tonight after a disappointing trip to Florida with one point from two matches. Going to play Miami FC in the US Open Cup Quarterfinals will be one of the toughest challenges to date. The NASL leaders who trounced the second place San Francisco City FC 7-0 over the weekend.
Harrison Delbridge was the only starter missing tonight due to an injury. Justin Hoyte stepped in to the central defensive role and played well.
Kenny Walker is proving to be the solid rock in the midfield for Cincinnati, his passing was incredible putting three balls over the defense assisting Djiby with his goal and creating a great chance that McLaughlin couldn’t finish. He is a player that Coach Koch is happy to have back.