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FC Cincinnati’s new era has checked off a major accomplishment, booking an Audi MLS Cup Playoffs spot for the first time since joining the league in 2019.

Cincy got over the line on Decision Day by beating D.C. United 5-2, needing the regular season’s last day to join the seven-team Eastern Conference playoff field. They’ll be the No. 5 seed and visit No. 4 New York Red Bulls in Round One.

Playoff history, key pieces

The Orange & Blue had finished bottom of the overall league table during their first three seasons in the league, winning just 14 of 91 matches and amassing a combined -105 goal differential.

Now, led by head coach Pat Noonan and general manager Chris Albright, postseason soccer awaits Cincy during the club’s fourth MLS campaign.

The attacking trio of midfielder Luciano Acosta and strikers Brandon Vazquez and Brenner has proven pivotal, combining for 46 goals and 33 assists this year.

The new regime has also brought in some key defensive pieces, ranging from goalkeeper Roman Celentano (SuperDraft) to US international center back Matt Miazga (allocation order) and defensive midfielder Obinna Nwobodo (transfer).

Audi 2022 MLS Cup Playoffs

MLS Cup 2022 is set for Nov. 5, while the playoffs will get underway Oct. 15 with Round One games (the top seed in each conference gets a bye).

The timeline takes into consideration the FIFA 2022 World Cup starting Nov. 20 in Qatar, rather than during the event’s typical summer months.