Nine players set to return for FC Cincinnati next season

Nine players set to return for FC Cincinnati next season (FC Cincinnati)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - FC Cincinnati has exercised the options for Matt Bahner, Garrett Halfhill, Justin Hoyte and Kenney Walker and re-signed Corben Bone, Danni Konig and Jimmy McLaughlin for the 2018 season. FCC signed Josu to an additional year in August and he and Sem de Wit both remain under contract with the club.

“Although we did not end the season the way we wanted, we had a successful second year and I thank the technical staff and the players for all the hard work they put in, as well as the fans for their support. We had an incredible U.S. Open Cup run where we advanced past five opponents in the tournament on our path to the semi-finals. There were many amazing moments for the team that we will build upon,” said Jeff Berding, FC Cincinnati President and General Manager. “We saw the USL dramatically improve from 2016 to 2017 and frankly, we did not do all the things we needed to do in the off-season to prepare appropriately last year. That will change this off-season. The Eastern Conference was a tight race with four different league leaders over the year and we expect the talent level to continue to rise next season. To be a winning franchise, we need to improve our roster across the board. We need to be better as this year was not good enough. We have the coaches in place to lead the way, supported by tremendous owners, a strong front office and the best fans in the USL. Our city deserves more and we are committed to doing all we can to make Cincinnati a championship city. We wish all our players who will be leaving us the best. They will always be a part of the FCC story and they have our respect and admiration.”

Bahner joined FCC from Jacksonville Armada this year and was a staple of the defense, playing 27 games and starting 25. Bahner has played 2,202 minutes and is third on the team with 72 interceptions and fourth with 126 duels won.

Bone, in his second season with FCC, logged 2,428 minutes over 29 games played. The midfielder scored twice this season with goals against New York Red Bulls II and Saint Louis FC to go along with three assists to tie for second on the team. Bone also tallied the opening goal against New York Red Bulls in the semifinal of the U.S. Open Cup.

Halfhill signed on with FCC as an amateur and then earned his first professional contract in July. He played in two matches for FCC this year.

Hoyte will enter his second to his second season with FCC after joining the team in 2017. The former Arsenal defender has started in 16 matches and most recently put away the game-winning goal in FCC’s 4-3 win in the regular-season finale for his second goal with the Orange and Blue.

Josu was a mid-season addition, joining the team from Extremadura UD from the Spanish third division. Appearing in 15 games and making 10 starts, the defender had three assists and put away a penalty kick in the FCC’s win over Chicago Fire SC.

König finished the regular season with 11 goals for FCC after joining the club in a trade with OKC Energy FC. The Danish forward made 24 appearances and 14 starts, adding an assist to his record.

McLaughlin was third on the team with five goals and tied for second with three assists. He led the field players with 32 games played and tied for third with 26 starts.

While these players are not currently under contract for 2018, FCC is in continuing discussions with Austin Berry, Mitch Hildebrandt and Djiby. Plans with Harrison Delbridge, Andrew Wiedeman and Paul Nicholson will be announced at a future date.

FCC will not exercise the options for Kadeem Dacres, Marco Dominguez, Dallas Jaye, Aodhan Quinn, Aaron Walker and Dan Williams. Contracts for Pat McMahon, Tyler Polak, Kevin Schindler and Mélé Temguia have expired and will not be renewed while the loan term for Kyle Greig from Vancouver Whitecaps has ended.

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