CINCINNATI, Ohio – FC Montreal lost 2-1 against FC Cincinnati on Saturday night, at the Nippert Stadium.
Cincinnati took the lead in the 35th minute when Sean Okoli scored on a penalty kick after being fouled in the box.
The best first-half chance for FC Montreal came in the 17th minute, when Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla held the ball up in the opposing box before passing it back to Alessandro Riggi, whose shot went over the net.
Back from halftime, FC Cincinnati scored a quick goal in the 48th minute, when Eric Stevenson crossed the ball at the far post for Okoli, who scored on a volleyed shot.
FC Montreal kept pushing to come from behind in the second half. In the 62nd minute, David Choinière passed into the path of Aron Mkungilwa’s run in the box. His strong shot was blocked by goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt.
In the 90th minute, Mkungilwa managed a cross in the box that was blocked by an opposing defender, but the ball went straight to Mastanabal Kacher who scored on an excellent low volley shot.
Despite its efforts late in the game, FC Montreal wasn’t able to score a second goal to tie the game.
“The players can be proud of themselves, it was a good game,” said head coach Philippe Eullaffroy. “We played against a strong team with a high level atmosphere. More than 14,000 supporters pushed their team, which sits third in the standings. Some moments were difficult, but we dealt with them positively. It was an interesting game until the end, because the substitutes also brought something in the game. If the next three games are of this quality, we’ll get points on the road.”
“It was a good game. We suffered a bit in the beginning, but we managed it well,” said defender Aron Mkungilwa. “We gave up two goals on mistakes that we shouldn’t make. It has nothing to do with the game against Rochester in terms of the quality that we showed. We have something good to build on for the next game in Toronto. We play four games in 11 days, all the players will be asked to show their qualities and we saw it today.”
FC Montreal will continue its series of four games on the road on Wednesday, June 15, at 11:30, against Toronto FC II, at the Ontario Soccer Centre. The Pittsburgh Riverhounds will be the next opponent on Saturday, June 18, at 7pm, followed by a game against the Harrisburg City Islanders on Tuesday, June 21, at 7pm.
FC Montreal: Maxime Crépeau*; Aron Mkungilwa, Thomas Meilleur-Giguère (Brandon Onkony 77’), Janouk Charbonneau, Simon Lemire (Zachary Sukunda 69’); Nevello Yoseke (Mastanabal Kacher 52’), Marco Dominguez (Philippe Lincourt-Joseph 69’), Louis Béland-Goyette; Alessandro Riggi (Yacine Ait Slimane 69’), Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla, David Choinière
Subs not used: James Pantemis
FC Cincinnati: Mitch Hildebrandt; Tyler Polak, Harrison Delbridge, Paul Nicholson, Pat McMahon; Kenney Walker (Ross Tomaselli 59’), Corben Bone, Jimmy McLaughlin (Antoine Hoppenot 59’), Andrew Wiedeman; Sean Okoli (Omar Cummings 69’), Eric Stevenson (Evan Lee 83’)
Subs not used: Dallas Jaye, Jamie Dell, Luke Spencer
CIN: Sean Okoli (PEN) 35’
CIN: Sean Okoli 48’
MTL: Mastanabal Kacher 90’
CIN: Kenney Walker 25’