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FC Cincinnati Loses Physical Match Amid Inconsistent Refereeing Decisions

FC Cincinnati lost 2-0 in an extremely physical match against Orlando City B. Orlando’s Pierre Da Silva converted a penalty he earned for the winning goal in the 75 minute. The attendance at Nippert Stadium was 19,310 on a warm evening in Cincinnati.

Kadeem Dacres conceded the penalty unfortunately due to him having a solid match on the right flank for Cincinnati. The second goal at the start of stoppage time from Richie Laryea sealed the three points for Orlando. He was able to cut down the right side of the field with the ball banking it off Mitch Hildebrandt’s inside post and in.

A very physical match that had nine bookings and 36 fouls meant the referee was a huge presence in match and the way it was played. Both benches were warned inside the first 30 minutes and from then on cards seemed to come flying with both teams trading fouls. When the referees left the field at the half and end of the game, it was to a chorus of boos from the home crowd.

Cincinnati’s Head Coach Alan Koch said after the match, “We have a group of players who are very frustrated with how the game went.” Then immediately talked about the referee saying, “I guess I’m not allowed to speak about the referee so I won’t speak about the ref.” But later elaborated when pressed, “Yellows that are handed out inconsistently… Sometimes it was a foul, sometimes it wasn’t. Sometimes it was just play on.” Adding, “We preach to our players consistently to take care of the details, I as a coach has to take care of the details. I think we expect the same from officials.”

Cincinnati captain commented on the officiating, “Continuous disrespect to me as a captain, of not speaking to me and them yelling at my players before coming to me,” adding, “If you blow up on my player before talking to me that is kind of disrespectful.”

There were only 14 shots in the game from both teams with most of them being easy to handle for the respective keepers. Cincinnati’s best chances came from Aodhan Quinn whose shot just rolled wide of the post in the 57 minute and then forced a pretty acrobatic save late in stoppage time.

The unsung hero of today’s match for Cincinnati is Jimmy McLaughlin who was all over the field and was able to carry the ball into dangerous positions as well as getting back and defending. He had a chance to put Cincinnati up early in the match after he fired in a shot from the top of the box after a pass from Danni Konig.

Konig made his debut after being acquired on Thursday this week in a trade for Andy Craven from the OKC Energy. He is a forward very similar to suspended Djiby Fall who holds play up and can change a match in an instant. Look for him to be the starter until Djiby gets back in June. Coach Koch commented on his match today saying, “Training for two days and being asked to lead a line is very difficult. He is a quality player and a professional.”

Cincinnati dropped to eighth place in the Eastern Conference with the loss today getting nine points in nine matches. For comparison Cincinnati had nine points in five matches last year.

Harrison Delbridge commented on the recent results, “It’s time for this group to start getting results, we have to many good players not to be.” Cincinnati has not won since Fall’s four goal performance against St. Louis FC on April 15.

Moments of the Match

Jimmy McLaughlin puts a rifle in the top corner, but Danni Konig passed back to him from an offside position in the third minute. It was Konig’s second touch as a Cincinnati player.

Cincinnati’s Matt Bahner picked up the first yellow card of the match after pulling back Pierre Da Silva on a counter in the 15 minute. It was the end of a handful of fouls from Cincinnati, which is probably why the yellow was given.

Seb Hines had a very hard challenge on Kadeem Dacres in the center of the field. Play was allowed to go on and a ball was played to McLaughlin who couldn’t get on the end of it in the 33 minute. A yellow was given to Hines for the challenge.

Aodhan Quinn picked up a yellow for a hard foul in his defending third in the 35 minute.

Danni Konig picked up a yellow as well after mimicking the referee, or better known as talking back but a booking nonetheless in the 39 minute.

Quinn puts a shot just wide of the post after a good back header from Konig and a cross from Baher in the 58 minute. The first real chance on the first half.

McLaughlin got a questionable yellow what may have not been a foul in the middle of the field in the 59 minute.

Cincinnati’s Corben Bone received a yellow card for dissent after walking by the referee with his head in the 67 minute.

Pierre Da Silva was brought down on the in the box by Dacres for a penalty. Da Silva steps up and buries it from the spot to give Orlando the lead in the 75 minute.

Another yellow for Orlando’s Richie Laryea after a sliding challenge on Berry in the center of the field in the 80 minute.

Harrison Delbridge went in for a rough challenge on Laryea . Play was allowed to continue and a great double save from Mitch Hildebrandt kept Cincinnati from going down by two goals in the 85 minute.

Orlando’s lead was doubled after Laryea puts one off the near post at the start of stoppage time to ice the match.

Cincinnati tried to get a consolation goal late but two shots were blocked and a very good shot from Quinn was saved by the Orlando keeper.

Up Next

Cincinnati hosts AFC Cleveland this Wed May 17 at 7:00 p.m. in the Lamar Hunt Open Cup at Nippert Stadium. Cleveland is in the National Premier Soccer League in the fourth tier. A win could see Cincinnati face off again with rivals Louisville City FC. This is a match that is not going to be televised or streamed so the only way to watch is in the stadium.

This Saturday May 20 at 7:00 p.m. Bethlehem Steel FC comes to town. Bethlehem beat Cincinnati on a late header the last time they met on April 29 in Bethlehem. Currently in ninth place Cincinnati needs a win to get back on track.

Final Thoughts

Cincinnati did not play very well tonight regardless of the refereeing. They did not deserve to win but should have had a draw. The need to get some results is key because five matches without a win is not a good look for a team that came into the season looking to hoist the USL Cup at the end of the year.

But today the refereeing was horrendous and some of the bookings were questionable. For Jimmy McLaughlin’s card for dissent, he only put his hands on his head walked past the official after a foul was called he didn’t agree with.

In the press conference after the game Coach Koch, Austin Berry and Harrison Delbridge all commented on how frustrated and disappointed they were after today’s match. Cincinnati needs to get back to scoring goals and winning. Look for some fire on Wednesday but, June 3 when Djiby Fall comes back cannot come soon enough.

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