ExLink - 07/14/18 - ORLvTOR

Orlando City SC vs. Toronto FC | 2018 MLS Match Preview

Orlando City SC vs. Toronto FC
2018 MLS Regular Season — Week 20

Orlando City Stadium — Orlando
July 14 - 8 pm ET

WATCH: TSN4, ESPN+

Two Eastern Conference foes desperate for points square off at Orlando City Stadium when Orlando City SC host Toronto FC Saturday night.

The Lions have lost nine straight games, including a 4-1 defeat at LAFC last Saturday, and have slipped to ninth in the East with 19 points. They sit three points in front of TFC, who battled Sporting Kansas City to a 2-2 draw at Children’s Mercy Park on the weekend.

Orlando City SC

When Sacha Kljestan scored in the 59th minute, Orlando (6-11-1) was within a goal and appeared to switch the momentum after Adama Diomande and Latif Blessing struck four minutes apart for a two-goal LAFC lead.

Dom Dwyer thought he leveled in the 72nd minute, but the goal was called back on Video Review and LAFC added two more goals in quick succession as Diomande had his brace followed by Diego Rossi's goal two minutes later.

“I think our reaction to that needs to be better, needs to be stronger,” James O’Connor said. “Our mentality and our resolve needs to be a lot stronger. We can point to and can say ‘is it offside? Is it not offside?’ But I think it became very evident then that the mentality needs to be a lot stronger.”

  • Suspended: M - Uri Rosell
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: GK - Mason Stajduhar (Localized Ewing Sarcoma), D - Scott Sutter (adductor injury), D - Lamine Sane (quad injury); QUESTIONABLE: M - Cristian Higuita (adductor injury), D - Jonathan Spector (hamstring injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Joe Bendik — RJ Allen, Chris Schuler, Amro Tarek, Danny Toia — Cristian Higuita, Yoshi Yotun — Chris Mueller, Sacha Kljestan, Josue Colman —Dom Dwyer

Toronto FC

July was labeled a make-or-break month and it hasn’t been a great start for Toronto FC (4-10-4), which suffered back-to-back defeats to the New York Red Bulls and Minnesota United FC before a sliver of hope emerged from rallying for a 2-2 draw against Sporting Kansas City on the weekend.

Jonathan Osorio put the Reds in front on 25 minutes, but SKC raced in front on goals by Ilie Sanchez (PK) and Johnny Russell four minutes apart in the second half. Jordan Hamilton made sure a third consecutive loss wasn’t in the works, though, netting the equalizer in the 69th minute.

“I think you have to take it for what it is,” Greg Vanney said. “I think we would have liked to get three points, but in the situation we are, we dropped two games and we needed to stop that, we needed to build some momentum.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: F - Jozy Altidore (foot surgery), D - Drew Moor (quadricep strain), D - Chris Mavinga (hamstring strain), GK - Caleb Patterson-Sewell (elbow injury), D - Auro (hamstring strain), D - Jason Hernandez (hamstring strain); QUESTIONABLE: M - Victor Vazquez (knee injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-4-2, right to left)
GK: Alex Bono — Gregory van der Wiel, Eriq Zavaleta, Nick Hagglund, Justin Morrow — Marky Delgado, Liam Fraser, Michael Bradley, Jonathan Osorio — Jordan Hamilton, Sebastian Giovinco

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Orlando City SC 1 win, 8 goals … Toronto FC 7 wins, 22 goals … 1 draw
  • At Orlando: Orlando City SC 1 win, 5 goals … Toronto FC 3 wins, 9 goals … 0 draws
  • Last meeting at Orlando: Orlando City SC 1, Toronto FC 3 (July 5, 2017)

Officials

Referee: Allen Chapman
Assistant Referees: Michael Kampmeinert, CJ Morgante
4th Official: Luis Guardia
VAR: Caleb Mendez

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