FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — FC Cincinnati attempted a delicate balancing act by resting key players during one of the busiest stretches of the season while keeping its Lamar Hunt US Open Cup hopes alive.
On Wednesday, in the fourth round of the Open Cup, FCC faced New England Revolution. He spared his highly stressed players but consequently didn’t have the firepower to match New England, who won the game 5-1 at Gillette Stadium.
Reigning Major League Soccer Most Valuable Player Carlos Gil scored a hat-trick and Adam Buksa scored twice for the hosts, who scored five without reply after FCC went 1-0 up.
In the 12th minute, Alvaro Barreal scored his third goal of Cincinnati’s two-game Open Cup season, but the goal was the highlight of FC Cincinnati’s evening.
“We missed that game pretty quickly,” said Pat Noonan, FC Cincinnati head coach afterwards. “We had a promising start, you know, when we took the lead. I think until we conceded the (first) goal we were pretty stable defensively. We didn’t have enough going forward but we didn’t concede much. ” We make a mistake by playing (from behind), lose the ball in a dangerous area and they convert.
“I think the rest of the half you could see the confidence dropping and you were falling behind at half time which I think was a result of the mentality of the group when we conceded the first goal. The second half , there is much that you could point out that is not good enough, so certainly things that we need to look at on an individual level and collectively.
Gil equalized the game with a penalty in the 34th minute after FC Cincinnati missed trying to play from the defensive line.
Three minutes later, Gil scored with a deflected shot, sending goalkeeper Kenneth Vermeer the wrong way.
Buksa scored just two minutes into the second half, Gil completed his hat-trick seven minutes later and by that point defeat was in order.
With their Open Cup journey now complete, Cincinnati will once again focus on their MLS campaign, in which the club surpassed expectations with a 5-5-1 record and a fifth-place finish in the Eastern Conference.
The loss dropped FC Cincinnati to 6-6-1 in all competitions in 2022.
“I want us to play in as many games as possible. If we advance in this competition, it means the guys who get chances move up,” Noonan said. “That was not the case. Yes, it’s a busy schedule and adding more games can be a challenge at times, but… we’d like to play more games and that won’t be the case, but I’m disappointed that by the end of the month there won’t be a another game for us there.
“I think the main talking point for us is that with this result, which is a really bad result, we don’t lose momentum and momentum in the league game, which obviously was a good stretch for us ahead of this game.”
New England will find out their opponent in the fifth round of the Open Cup during a draw to be conducted by the US Soccer Association on Thursday.
In addition to Gil and Buksa, New England fielded a team of several top-notch players against Cincinnati.
In comparison, Geoff Cameron and Zico Bailey were the only survivors in FC Cincinnati’s starting lineup from the starting group that won against Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field on Saturday.
More:Why winning at Minnesota United FC brings FC Cincinnati full circle
The gulf in experience between the two teams became apparent when the starting roster was announced by New England head coach and athletic director Bruce Arena on social media.
That lineup included 72 combined appearances in the 2022 MLS season and 60 combined starts.
FC Cincinnati’s starting lineup came in at 61 combined appearances and just 29 combined starts in league games.
Four FC Cincinnati players failed to start in MLS competition.
Arena’s line-up may have surprised some, but that wasn’t an excuse for defeat, Noonan said.
“Apart from the score and the result, this was a chance for a lot of players,” said Noonan. “It will always be difficult to expect the same quality and consistency with so many changes that we may have seen in the pre-game phase, but it’s a chance for the players to get more minutes and improve their standing within I don’t know that happened on many levels tonight but the game is saying a lot and we found out a bit more today about maybe some individual players and how far we still have to go to become consistent contributions and a reliable one be an option.
“It was certainly a chance for some guys to recover. What I really appreciated was when things got kind of out of hand at the end, there were players who still wanted to get into that game. Lucho (Acosta) wants get in.” game and those are positives – silver lining to what was an overall pretty bad night.”
FC Cincinnati won’t have much time to stew over Wednesday’s disappointment.
The club flew back to Cincinnati after the game and will travel again this weekend, this time to the Chicago Fire.
“The focus is on Chicago and preparing for it,” Barreal said. “We know that the way we’ve played in the league, we can be prepared to get a result in Chicago.”
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Welcome to Cincinnati.com’s live coverage of FC Cincinnati vs. New England Revolution in the fourth round of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup at Gillette Stadium. Refresh this page during the game for live updates and analysis, and follow Enquirer FC Cincinnati’s Beat Reporter Pat Brennan on Twitter (@PBrennanENQ) for more updates.
Updates during the game:
• FINALS: New England 5, Cincinnati FC 1.
• 57 minutes – TOR, New England (5-1): Adam Buksa.
• 54 minutes – TOR, New England (4-1): Carlo Gil perfected his hat trick with a left goal in the top corner for his third goal
• 47 minutes – TOR, New England (3-1): Adam Buksa headed in from under Kenneth Vermeer’s bar to put the Revolution firmly in control of the game.
• Halftime: New England 2, FC Cincinnati 1.
• 37 minutes – TOR, New England (2-1): Carlos Gil Shot from the top of the box was deflected on its way in and sped past goalkeeper Kenneth Vermeer.
• 34 minutes – TOR, New England (1: 1): Carlos Gil (penalty).
• 12th minute – TOR, FC Cincinnati (0: 1): Alvaro Barreal scored his third goal of the FCC’s 2022 Open Cup season when he played a ball from Haris Medunjanin over the top of the New England defense.
• Game runs at approximately 7:04 p.m
• FC Cincinnati starting XI: Kenneth Vermeer (GK), Zico Bailey, Tyler Blackett, Geoff Cameron, Alvas Powell, Alvaro Barreal, Haris Medunjanin, Harrison Robledo, Isaac Atanga, Nick Markanich, Quimi Ordonez.
• FCC Bank: Roman Celentano (TW), Nick Hagglund, Ian Murphy, Luciano Acosta, Junior Moreno, Obinna Nwobodo, Brandon Vazquez.
• New England Revolution starting XI: Djordje Petrovic (GK), DeJuan Jones, Henry Kessler, Andrew Farrell, Brandon Bye, Maciel, Tommy McNamara, Damian Rivera, Carlos Gil (Captain), Arnor Traustason, Adam Buksa.
• NE Bank: Jacob Jacobson, Omar Gonzalez, Ryan Spaulding, Emmanuel Boateng, Sebastian Lletget, Matt Polster, Justin Rennicks.