FC Cincinnati wins the Supporters’ Shield, its first major trophy, securing the best record in MLS

PJ O’Keefe


TORONTO — FC Cincinnati has won its first major trophy, clinching the Supporters’ Shield as winners of the MLS overall best record in the regular season.

The team secured the hardware after beating Toronto 3-2 Saturday night.

Brandon Vazquez scored two goals early in the first half, but Toronto answered, scoring two goals late in the first half.

Vazquez had another chance on a perfect through ball from Luciano Acosta in the 64th minute, but couldn’t put it past Toronto’s goalkeeper.

But FCC broke through again in the 73rd minute after another incredible pass from Acosta, but this time to Aaron Boupendza, who after a few perfect touches finished beautifully in the top right corner of the goal from 10 yards out.

FC Cincinnati has secured the top seed in the playoffs as a result of winning the Supporters Shield, earning home field advantage throughout.

The top-place performance comes on a year when they have a leading MVP candidate in the form of Acosta, whom they just signed to a long-term extension, and a franchise record-setting performance in goal by Celantano, who has the most clean sheets in team history.

FCC last lifted a trophy in 2018, when they won the USL regular season championship.

The team they will play is determined by a Wild Card match between the 8 and 9 seeds of the MLS regular season, which has three weeks left in it. It is still possible that Inter Miami CF and its international superstar Lionel Messi could be that 9 seed. It’s a team that FC Cincinnati lost to in the US Open Cup semifinals over the summer, which they also play in a regular season matchup in Miami on Oct. 7.