The Impact opened the scoring in the first half then doubled their lead almost immediately due to a defensive error, a particularly deflating passage in the match for Orlando City. But it's not all doom and gloom for the Lions.
"I think the biggest thing for us is that the players don't get too down after one performance," OCSC coach James O'Connor said after training Wednesday (video above). "Because when we look at the course of the preseason and when we look at the course of the first two games, the energy and enthusiasm, not just from the players, but from everybody around the place was really, really positive. I refuse to let one game now just take that away."
Orlando will look to earn their first win of the season as the club travels north to face a New York Red Bulls squad Saturday that will be without key players due to international duty: Aaron Long, Kaku, Kemar Lawrence and Michael Murrilo (7:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in US; DAZN in Canada).
"We've come out and we're trying to get a little bit of work in every day and just continue to add on what we've been building," forward Chris Mueller said. "We don't want to get down on ourselves and negative at this point in the season. It's not time for any of that. We need to continue to look forward and build on what the positives were and take it from there. And hopefully the results will start to fall our way."
Orlando won't be at full strength, either. Kamal Miller and Sebastian Mendez are unavailable because of international duty, while Lamine Sane and Will Johnson are injured. New signing Robin Jansson hasn't yet gotten his paperwork cleared, though he has a chance of being eligible by Saturday.
Mueller, in only his second season in the league, offers an optimistic viewpoint.
"The teams that can bounce back from starts like this are the ones that can end up going deep in the playoffs and just deep in the season with a strong run," Mueller said. "So I think that right now we need to look forward and build on the positives."