FC Buffalo home opener lead undone by red card, stoppage-time header

NEXT: FCB women vs Erie | FCB men vs Akron City

Red cards change games, but FC Buffalo fans learned Sunday just how close a team can come to shaking off an early dismissal.

Pittsburgh Hotspurs sub Bryan Akongo nodded in a stoppage-time cross to lift the visitors past FC Buffalo 2-1 at Dobson Field, completing a comeback after the hosts took a 1-0 lead into halftime.

Center back Jed Smith had nodded FC Buffalo in front after 26 minutes of play when he darted to the heart of the box to meet Max Kwitchoff’s swirling corner kick, and the Wolves looked prepared for another three points against Pennsylvania opposition after beating Erie in Erie on Friday.

Pittsburgh pulled even shortly after halftime when FCB reacted slowly following a yellow card to Kwitchoff, and the real drama followed after the hour mark.

Nevado Elliott was already on a yellow when his sliding challenge was deemed worthy of a second one from the head referee, sending the Wolves down a man for the final 26 minutes plus stoppage time.

And FCB had several chances to retake the lead despite the man disadvantage, only to see the game go deep into stoppage time for Akongo’s back-post header of a picturesque cross from the right.

FCB will need to rebound quickly come Friday evening, when the 1W-2L Wolves will host a 1W-1L Akron City side at Dobson Field.

Pregame and postgame shenanigans will be welcomed at Banshee Irish Pub, located at 257 Franklin Street in Buffalo.

TICKETS: FCB women vs Erie | FCB men vs Akron City