FC Cincinnati made a strong statement on the soccer field this weekend by eliminating Inter Miami CF from the 2023 Audi MLS Cup playoffs with an impressive 1-0 victory. This win not only solidified FC Cincinnati’s status as one of the top contenders in the American soccer scene but also served as sweet revenge for the Ohio-based team.
FC Cincinnati, already crowned Supporters’ Shield winners, entered the showdown against Inter Miami with a determined attitude, showcasing their unwillingness to yield to the talents of Lionel Messi and his teammates. In a thrilling match, the Orange & Blue managed to outplay the Herons, with left-back Álvaro Barreal netting the winning goal just 12 minutes before the final whistle.
The victory held special significance for FC Cincinnati as it was a rematch against the same Inter Miami side that had dramatically knocked Cincy out in the semifinals of the U.S. Open Cup back in August. Coach Pat Noonan’s team didn’t express excessive satisfaction with the win but acknowledged that Inter Miami is a dangerous team that could have posed a significant challenge in the playoffs.
However, FC Cincinnati is not resting on its laurels after this victory. They understand that despite their stellar regular season record, there is still room for improvement. An unexpected home defeat to the New York Red Bulls in the week leading up to the Inter Miami clash served as a reminder that underestimating opponents in the soccer playoffs is a risky proposition.
Coach Noonan was clear in stating that the team will need to step up their game if they want to succeed in the playoffs. He emphasized that playing inconsistently is not the path to victory in the crucial stages of the competition. The message is straightforward: FC Cincinnati has a reasonable amount of time to fine-tune their performance and prepare for upcoming challenges.
FC Cincinnati’s win over Inter Miami not only secured their place in the 2023 Audi MLS Cup playoffs but also marked a successful revenge mission against an adversary that had thwarted their plans in the U.S. Open Cup. However, the team is aware that they need to improve their performance if they want to clinch the coveted MLS championship. Soccer in the United States is becoming increasingly competitive, and FC Cincinnati is determined to keep progressing toward their goal.