Nashville SC (8W-7L-6D, 30 pts.) will head to FC Cincinnati (7W-8L-6D, 27 pts.) in a cross-conference clash Saturday night at TQL Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. CT.
Nashville sits in fifth place in the Western Conference standings entering its fourth all-time meeting with Cincinnati in Major League Soccer play. The Boys in Gold own a 2W-0L-1D record against FC Cincinnati and have scored 11 goals with a plus-six goal differential in that stretch. In their last meeting, Nashville scored their highest goal total in club history in a 6-3 win at TQL Stadium on Oct. 27, 2021.
MVP candidate and MLS All-Star Hany Mukhtar continues to have a sensational 2022 season, ranking second in the league in goals scored (12) after scoring in his fifth consecutive match, a new Nashville SC record, on Sunday night against LAFC.
After a stretch of three matches in nine days, Head Coach Gary Smith and his squad have had nearly a week to rest and rejuvenate before hitting the road in hopes of collecting three points.
Here’s everything you need to know about Saturday's matchup:
Date: Saturday, July 23
Time: 6:30 p.m. CT
Location: TQL Stadium (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Local Stream: NashvilleSC.com/stream, Nashville SC App
English Radio: iHeartRadio Online, Nashville SC App
Spanish Radio: El Jefe 96.7 FM
Watch Party: Corner Pub Cool Springs
The Boys Bounce Back - Nashville has shown its resilience throughout this season by responding well after losses. The Boys in Gold have four wins, one draw and one loss in league play immediately following losses in 2022.
Nashville enters the weekend tied with the second-most road wins in the Western Conference along with LAFC (five). The Boys in Gold have had success against the Eastern Conference this season, owning a 3W-1L-2D record.
Welcome, Shaq - Nashville SC made waves in MLS this week with the signing of United States Men’s National Team defender Shaq Moore. Moore met with the media on Thursday after participating in his first training session with the group.
"For me, (Nashville SC) was the overall package,” Moore said. “(General Manager) Mike Jacobs was really instrumental in this move. He’s been tracking me for a while, so the interest in me from a while back was very important. Playing with Walker (Zimmerman), that’s a good partnership to start to build. It just felt like it was the best move at the best time at this point in my career. … Nashville checked all the boxes."
Moore, 25, will be available for selection upon receipt of this International Transfer Certificate. He joins Nashville SC from CD Tenerife of LaLiga2 where he made 101 appearances across all competitions in the past three seasons. At the international level, Moore has earned 15 caps for the United States Men’s National Team.
Scouting Cincinnati - After finishing last in the league in three consecutive seasons, FC Cincinnati, led by Head Coach Pat Noonan, finds itself in the race for an Eastern Conference playoff berth for the first time in the club’s history. Cincinnati boasts a dangerous attacking trio in forward Brandon Vázquez (10 goals, four assists), midfielder Luciano Acosta (six goals, 10 assists), and forward Brenner (five goals, four assists).
“From what I’ve seen, they’re a much-improved group from the last couple of years,” Smith said. “When I say ‘much-improved,’ I think Pat’s done a wonderful job of refocusing this group. That builds an internal confidence and strength, and I think he’s done a wonderful job of putting them in a strong position right now in a tough Eastern Conference. It’ll be a really tough game.”
Nashville has history on its side, outscoring the Orange and Blue 9-3 in the last two meetings between these teams, both wins for the Boys in Gold.
Cincinnati’s last victory came at home against Orlando City on June 24. Since then, Cincinnati has drawn four times and lost once.