For the first time since November 2015, Matt Miazga took to the field in an MLS match on Saturday, lasting 66 minutes on his FC Cincinnati debut.
The Orange and Blue were 2-1 up against Atlanta United at the time of Miazga’s withdrawal, eventually going on to draw 2-2. The 27-year-old center-back put in a steady defensive performance that saw him make five clearances, four recoveries, two interceptions, two blocks, and one tackle.
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“Yeah, unfortunately, we didn’t get that three points. But there’s obviously a lot of positives to take from the game,” Miazga reflected after the match. “And also, you know, points where we can improve on and learn from. So obviously, going into this upcoming week, we’ll be analyzing the things we can improve on, and taking the positives and building on them.”
On his individual experience at TQL Stadium, Miazga added: “My debut was fantastic in terms of, you know, playing in front of [the] fans and stadium. The support I got it was wonderful. And I’m very pleased to be here.”
Miazga spent six years at Chelsea, during which time he spent loan spells in the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, and France, as well as with other English clubs. As such, he’s as well-placed as anyone to chart the improvement of MLS in recent times given his experiences in and outside of the league.
“Obviously, I’ve played MLS in the past, and it was always a good level. So I knew that it was always going to improve, and the league has invested a lot in a lot of players now and spending more money,” Miazga said.
“More quality is coming in. And you can see with Atlanta and I know they spent quite a few dollars on some players. They’re pretty good players, and yes the league’s growing consistently every year. I’m happy to be back and be a part of that growth.”
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