Pat Noonan believes it was important for FC Cincinnati's confidence to keep a clean sheet at FC Dallas last time out, saying fans must trust the process ahead of their midweek trip to D.C United.

Cincinnati claimed their sixth straight road victory last time out by a 1-0 scoreline, returning to winning ways following a 2-1 defeat at home to the New England Revolution.

The Supporters' Shield holders are just two points behind this year's pacesetters Inter Miami despite their squad going through something of an overhaul in pre-season.

While Noonan is pleased with his team's defensive resilience, he also feels there is much more to come.

"We've lost a couple of key pieces and we're trying to find our best group each game. We're still trying to find answers," Noonan said.

"No question it was important for the confidence of the group… but also not weathering the storm for 90 minutes and just conceding chance after chance, that wasn't the case.

"It's going to be a game-by-game process.

"I hate to say the word process, but with a particular group of players trying to get better and understand the relationships and the roles, we have to figure out a way to continue to be strong with what we have."

D.C., meanwhile, are 13th in the East after going nine games without a win, though they did avoid a fourth straight loss by drawing 2-2 with the New York Red Bulls on Saturday.

Asked how he felt after that game, coach Troy Lesesne said: "No mixed emotions. I'm incredibly proud of the group, they showed the kind of character and integrity that we want to have under challenging circumstances.

"They fought, and I think that is exactly what is necessary for us to get ourselves into a better position in the table.

"There's a long way to go in 2024 and we're going to keep fighting."


D.C. United – Pedro Santos

Santos scored D.C. United's second goal in their 2-2 draw with the Red Bulls from a direct free-kick.

It was just the second direct free-kick goal for the club in the last five years, with Yordy Reyna scoring the other one against Atlanta United in August 2021.

FC Cincinnati – Luca Orellano

Orellano netted his fifth goal of the season last time out as Cincinnati got back to winning ways in Dallas.

Only Luciano Acosta (nine) and Yuya Kubo (seven) have more in MLS for the team this year.


D.C. United are winless in nine straight matches, drawing three and losing six. They last had a longer winless run in regular-season play in 2013 and 2014, a 15-match span that included 12 games without a win to end the 2013 campaign.

Cincinnati are excellent travellers and enter this match as big favourites.

They are the third team in the post-shootout era (since 2000) to win six straight on the road in regular-season MLS play, and could tie the record of seven with another victory here, set by CF Montreal from July to October 2022.


D.C. United – 22.4%

FC Cincinnati – 55.5%

Draw – 22.1%