Scouting TFC II’s Next Opponent: FC Cincinnati

TFC II will play their second home match of the season, as they take on USL newcomer FC Cincinnati. 

The young Reds are welcoming a new face to the Ontario Soccer Centre, as FC Cincinnati come to town and will be bringing a familiar face to Toronto. If you remember the name Andrew Wiedeman, then you know your Toronto FC history. Weideman played for TFC from 2012-2014 and has now found himself in the USL. That doesn’t mean he isn’t a threat for TFC II. He is still very capable of breaking through defenders and scoring goals. The TFC II backline will need to work hard to contain him.

This will be Cincinnati’s fourth match of the season,and recently lost a close match 3-2 to Louisville City, which saw them concede three first half goals and then fight their way back. Cincinnati may be the new team on the block, but they bring experience with them.

Who is FC Cincinnati?

If you haven’t heard about this club before, that’s okay. The club was formed eight months ago and not only are the ambitions that the USL club will succeed, but they also hope to expand into MLS. Cincinnati plays in the huge Nippert Stadium, which holds 20,000 but could expand to hold 40,000. The stadium even broke the USL attendance record with 20,497 on April 16 in the match against Louisville City, in which they lost 3-2. They also share the stadium with the University of Cincinnati.

Cincinnati is also one of eight clubs to not have any MLS affiliation, meaning the have a mix of MLS and USL veterans, along with some U-21 players. They have an average age of 24, and feature former MLS players like Austin BerryCorben BoneOmar Cummings, and Wiedeman. TFC II head coach Jason Bent mentioned that Wiedeman has a nose for the goal and is very talented with both feet. The young Reds backline will need to be careful of his abilities.

They currently sit eighth in the East with a 2-2-0 record, recording six goals for and six against.

Players to watch

The players mentioned above are definitely ones to watch. They bring MLS experience with them and have been around the game for a long time. One player that isn’t mentioned above is Sean Okoli. The former Seattle Sounders youngster has had stints with Orange County Blues of the USL and the New England Revolution and currently has two goals and one assist in four matches.

Okoli brings speed and creativity to the pitch and he showed both of those in his first two goals of the 2016 campaign. He looks to stand back and become a second option for his teammates. TFC II will need to watch him closely and make sure he doesn’t go on unwatched runs.

Other than Okoli, Cincinnati has two veteran USL players in Pat McMahon and Paul Nicholson who can be rocks in the back field. McMahon was part of a dominate Rochester Rhinos squad that gave up the fewest goals and won the USL championship. Nicholson, a defensive midfielder, spent four years with former TFC affiliate, the Wilmington Hammerheads and can be a very tough player to anything by. Expect these two to make things difficult for TFC II’s strikers.