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NYCFC and FC Cincinnati play out thrilling 4-4 draw in wildest MLS game of the year

A hat-trick, two disallowed finishes, a saved penalty… and THREE goals in the 45th minute! NYCFC and FC Cincinnati Strike 4-4 Draw in Wildest MLS Game of the Year

  • FC Cincinnati and NYCFC played a thrilling 4-4 ​​draw on Wednesday night
  • Cincinnati raced to a 3-0 lead but gave up three from the 45th minute
  • A wave of first-half stoppage time goals changed the momentum of the match
  • NYCFC then took a 4-3 lead before striker Brenner secured his hat-trick for 4-4

Brazilian striker Brenner saved Cincinnati’s blush with a hat-trick as he wrapped up a wild 4-4 draw against New York City FC on Wednesday night.

Cincinnati appeared to be heading for a routine win as they caught up with a 3-0 lead.

Luciano Costa made it 1-0 before Brenner scored a brace to bring his side under control after 30 minutes.

NYCFC resistance looked broken for good when Roman Celentano saved Maxi Moralez’s penalty 34 minutes into the game. But on the way to the 45th minute all hell broke loose.

Brazilian striker Brenner saved a draw for FC Cincinnati in a thrilling 4-4 ​​draw with NYCFC

Brazilian striker Brenner saved a draw for FC Cincinnati in a thrilling 4-4 ​​draw with NYCFC

It was a crazy game with Cincinnati taking a 3-0 lead before trailing 4-3

It was a crazy game with Cincinnati taking a 3-0 lead before trailing 4-3

In front of the 21,258 fans in attendance, NYCFC looked out of the fight without throwing a punch, but just before the break, the match was turned on its head.

As the clock struck 45 minutes, NYCFC had a goal back, with Talles Magno coming in from a corner.

Two minutes later, the deficit was further reduced, striker Heber received the first of a brace.

His first was a delightful chip on his left foot over the keeper before his second, to stun the crowd and make it 3-3, came with a back-post header from a free kick.

NYCFC showed the courage to turn the game around with four goals in the space of seven minutes

NYCFC showed the courage to turn the game around with four goals in the space of seven minutes

It was the first time in MLS history that a side had made a comeback from three goals before half-time.

‘The only thing I said to’ [Noonan] was, “If you bought a ticket to this game, you got twice your value today,” said NYCFC boss Nick Cushing.

“And as coaches, we don’t want that, but that’s what I believe.

“For everyone who bought a ticket today to come to this game, they certainly got their ticket price.”

NYCFC wasn’t done there, though.

Cushing’s side had all the momentum and sensationally took the lead early in the second half via Gabriel Pereira.

Cincinnati coach Pat Noonan was frustrated afterwards, saying two points had been lost

Cincinnati coach Pat Noonan was frustrated afterwards, saying two points had been lost

But it would be Brenner who would have the final say on the scoresheet, scoring smartly from the edge of the penalty area for the first-ever MLS hat-trick in Cincinnati history.

He could have had more if it hadn’t been for the offside flag.

One, a clever heel finish, was quickly disallowed and a second, which led to wild scenes where Brenner believed he had secured a 5-4 win, was ruled offside.

‘Down two points. There is no doubt that if you are leading 3-0 at any point, you will lose two points,” said Cincinnati coach Pat Noonan.

“There is disappointment, but I think the energy in that dressing room, despite not getting the three points, is a group that is hungry and expecting more, even against a good opponent.”

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