Photo by Mathew Ballard
Louisville City FC coach James O’Connor said Monday that ticket sales for this weekend’s rematch with FC Cincinnati are “way ahead of where we’ve been for any other game” — so much so that Slugger Field could reach its 13,100-fan capacity Saturday.
Accordingly, O’Connor’s preparing his players for an amped-up environment.
“You want to make sure it becomes an intimidating place for the opposition, so when you get that level of support, it’s important then that we feed off the back of it, which we do,” the coach said at his regular weekly press conference.
Having already bounced back from its three losses this season with wins, LouCity will have a chance at continuing that trend against FC Cincinnati. O’Connor compared a 3-1 loss last Saturday at Charlotte — now the USL Eastern Conference’s top team — to the 3-2 defeat his side suffered in its last meeting with Cincinnati, back on July 15.
That meaning LouCity controlled possession and created chances, only to give up “poor” goals.
“Well, looking at Saturday, we haven’t learned any lessons,” O’Connor said. “That was the frustrating thing for me.”
Still, he added, “To go and completely dominate like we did and play as well as we did against a team that’s number one in the East is very, very promising.”
Next, the boys in purple will look to hold that form — perhaps in front of a sellout crowd.
Here’s more from O’Connor’s meeting with the media…
On the players’ reaction to the halftime deficit to Charlotte: “The reaction I think second half to being two-nil down was excellent. We created multiple opportunities, but then we leave the back door open and get pinched in again on the third goal. So there’s a little bit of learning for us from that standpoint. But again, I’ve said it multiple times, I couldn’t be prouder of our players. That type of performance generally will get you a result. It’s not too often you’re going to play like that and lose the game three to one, that’s for sure.”
On the defensive errors leading to goals for the opposition: “I think when we look at it, it’s never just one player. It’s multiple reactions, multiple instances — maybe lack of communication — so there’s multiple things that we’ve gone through today. Again, when you’re dealing with guys that want to get better and are very attentive and very keen to learn, it becomes easy. I think it would be really frustrating if you’re dealing with a group of guys who don’t care or don’t want to pay attention — who aren’t striving for growth. I think there’s a real hunger and a real determination from our guys, which is great to see. They’re very keen to get back out there, so we’re all looking forward to Saturday’s game.”
On lineup changes, including resting Brian Ownby in Charlotte: “Again, for me, it’s not necessarily about formations. It’s more getting players in attacking space and doing whatever it is that will win you the game and again, I think throughout the course of the season, we’ve done that really well.”