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Djiby sends Cincinnati into the semifinals of U.S. Open Cup

FC Cincinnati advances to the U.S. Open Cup semifinals after beating Miami FC 1-0. Djiby Fall scored the lone goal off an assist from Justin Hoyte.

Cincinnati will host the New York Red Bulls on August 15 at 8 p.m. The previous two Open Cup matches Cincinnati hosted against the Columbus Crew and Chicago Fire drew 30,160 and 32,287. Expect a crowd larger than 30,000 and potentially a sell out for this incredible feat by Alan Koch and the Cincinnati players.

This will be the first time since 2011 that a non MLS team is in the semifinal. The Richmond Kickers lost to Chicago that year in the semifinal.

Djiby scored his fourth goal in the Open Cup tonight. He is the only player for Cincinnati to score in the competition. He put Cincinnati past AFC Cleveland in the second round with a late goal in the second half of extra time. He scored the lone goal in the second half against rivals Louisville City FC. Columbus also fell in a second half goal as well. He failed to score in the match against Chicago that ended 0-0, but FC Cincinnati advanced on penalties.

Cincinnati started out defending and their first attack looked promising with a cross from Justin Hoyte that was well punched out by the keeper. In the fourth minute a good ball from Miami put into the box but the shot was missed. Cincinnati was lucky not to be down early.

An interception in the 12th minute by Corben Bone off a bad pass from the Miami keeper gave Cincinnati a great chance early but the shot went just wide.

Aodhan Quinn charged to the end line and put a ball across the face of goal but no Cincinnati player could get a touch in the 20 minute. Djiby and Konig were in the area.

Right before the half Miami had a shot off the corner but Hildebrandt coolly collected the ball. The best chance from Miami since the first 10 minutes.

In the 47th minute Cincinnati players and fans had flashbacks from this past weekend when the referee indicated a penalty for Miami after a handball. But the referee rightly switched the call after a few seconds.

Djiby slides a ball in between the legs of the Miami keeper to give Cincinnati the lead in the 68 minute. Hoyte beat his man on the left and passes to Djiby, who scores on his first touch.

Bone collects a long pass off a free kick in the 86 minute and puts a low cross across the face of goal but no one is there to meet it.

An 86th minute clearance up to Djiby who plays a great pass to Wiedeman charging into space but he is closed down and is too hesitant to take a shot quickly. The eventual shot is right at the keeper.

Miami’s best chance of the night, Poku made a great run past four Cincinnati players before Hildebrandt expertly saves a shot in a one on one situation. The game should have been tied in the 89th minute.

News and Notes

Cincinnati could potentially host the Open Cup final if they beat New York and the San Jose Earthquakes beat Sporting KC.

The attendance tonight was 10,415. It is the highest that Miami has had all season.

Kevin Schindler started his first match for Cincinnati since joining the club. His first appearance was this past Saturday against the Rochester Rhinos where he came on as a sub.

Sem De Wit made his first appearance tonight starting as the middle centreback in the back three.

Next Up

Cincinnati will host Orlando City B at 7:00 pm this Saturday August 5th. Their last matchup ended in a 1-1 draw in Orlando. Orlando currently sits in 11th place with 23 points (5-6-9). Cincinnati will be without Djiby, backup keeper Dallas Jaye, and assistant coach Yohann Demet due to all three being sent off in the loss to the Rochester Rhinos. Djiby received two yellow cards that resulted in a red while Jaye and Demet were sent off from the bench.

Final Thoughts

Cincinnati executed their gameplan to perfection; staying very compact defensively and never letting the best Miami player, Poku, to really have an influence on the match. The attacks were solid and there was a big difference when Matt Bahner came on for Kevin Schindler in the right wing back position. Bahner is much better at getting forward and crossing the ball while Schindler is better defensively. It was the opposite wing back in Hoyte who provided the assist on Djiby’s goal.

Hildebrandt had a good game with his first two saves being fairly easy but the save on Poku in the one on one was incredible and saved Cincinnati from having to endure extra time.

The three man back line of Cincinnati has gotten a lot of credit this season, but the more they play it the better Austin Berry and Harrison Delbridge seem to play. Both made great tackles to stop a one on one with the keeper.

Cincinnati hosting another MLS team in two weeks and there will be another great crowd at Nippert. I would expect ESPN will attempt to come back and show the incredible atmosphere. The match against Chicago attracted a viewing audience close to MLS.

Relive the two MLS opponents here.

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