Orlando's Nani and NYCFC's Alexandru Mitrita both get assist in MLS debut

Orlando City SC had a surprise omission from their first starting XI of the season, and it was their newest Designated Player.

Nani made the subs bench for Lions coach James O'Connor ahead in Saturday's opener at home against New York City FC, though he didn't take long to take his mark once he did come in off the bench.

He came on with 20 minutes remaining and just five minutes later he played Dom Dwyer through to pick up a secondary assist on Tesho Akindele's equalizing goal in the 75th minute to make it 2-2.

Nani, a mainstay for Portugal throughout the years, arrived in Orlando two weeks ago after making 18 appearances — 16 starts — this Portuguese league season for Sporting. Most recently, he played the first 45 minutes of Sporting's 4-2 home loss to Benfica on Feb. 3. 

There were fewer surprises in Dome Torrent's NYCFC starting XI, where Alexandru Mitrita made his debut up top in the role formerly occupied now-former NYCFC hero David Villa.

The 24-year-old Mitrita, who commanded a reported $8.5 million transfer fee, set up NYCFC's second goal of the game with a seeing-eye pass to set up the scoring chance:


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