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Orlando City vs. Montreal Impact, Round 3: How to Watch, TV Info, Live Stream, Open Thread, Lineups and More

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The Lions take on one of the league's hottest teams in the Montreal Impact. Can the Lions keep their winning streak going and stay alive in the MLS playoff race?

Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to your open thread for the third and final match-up of season between Orlando City (10-13-8, 38 points) and Montreal Impact (12-11-6, 42 points). The Lions are 0-1-1 in the season series after a 2-2 draw back on March 28 and a 2-0 loss on June 20—both in Montreal but in two different stadiums (Olympic Stadium, then Stade Saputo).

The last match-up came after a marathon mid-week U.S. Open Cup match at Charleston and was the lone blemish in the middle of a run that saw the Lions go 5-1-4 in all competitions from May 17 to July 4. Orlando couldn't muster much attack in that June loss, getting out-shot 18-12 (5-3 in SOG) and Donny Toia's headed goal off a corner kick was the lone tally of the match until Dominic Oduro added a 93rd-minute insurance goal off the counter. In retrospect, Brek Shea played that game hurt after returning injured from USMNT duty.

The first match saw an undermanned Orlando (due to injuries and international call-ups) battle back from 2-0 down to draw 2-2. It appeared the Lions were in line for much more than one point after scoring twice in two minutes, but Montreal adjusted well after halftime. City deployed a 5-4-1 lineup with Danny Mwanga up top, which sometimes morphed into a 3-4-3 with Kaká and Pedro Ribeiro joining Mwanga in the attack.

Ignacio Piatti scored from the spot after a handball in the box by Seb Hines and Jack McInerney beat Donovan Ricketts with a ridiculous chip to provide the Impact goals.

Orlando City is enjoying its best winning streak since joining MLS, capturing full points in the last three matches. Montreal is in by far its best run of the season, winning its last three and going unbeaten in six (4-0-2). It's probably not a coincidence that the run merges with Didier Drogba's arrival in Montreal.

Speaking of Drogba, the talented Ivorian has been a question mark all week as he mulls over playing on artificial turf for the first time in his career. This is not an insignificant question, as Montreal still has a game remaining at New England as well. I'm going to assume he's playing.

The key to beating a Drogba-led Impact side is to cut off his service, which is easier said than done. Piatti can be a magician with the ball and draws a lot of fouls around the 18. These free kicks fall can be deadly because Drogba can be insanely accurate from distance on a free kick. In addition, Dilly Duka and Dominic Oduro are tough to stop. Orlando City's Luke Boden has struggled at times to mark Oduro, which may necessitate moving Shea back to left back.

Orlando will want to get all three points to stay in the playoff fight.

Here's your mandatory content to prep for tonight:

Projected Lineups:

Orlando City (4-2-3-1)

Goalkeeper: Tally Hall

Defenders: Luke Boden, Aurelien Collin, Seb Hines, Rafael Ramos

Defensive Midfielders: Servando Carrasco, Darwin Ceren

Attacking Midfielders: Brek Shea, Kaká, Lewis Neal

Forwards: Cyle Larin

Bench: Earl Edwards Jr., Seb Hines, Corey Ashe, Eric Avila, Adrian Winter, Carlos Rivas, Bryan Rochez

Montreal Impact (4-2-3-1)

Goalkeeper: Evan Bush

Defenders: Donny Toia, Wandrille Lefevre, Hassoun Camara, Ambroise Oyongo

Defensive Midfielders: Nigel Reo-Coker, Marco Donadel

Attacking Midfielders: Dilly Duka, Ignacio Piatti, Dominic Oduro

Forward: Didier Drogba

Bench: Eric Kronberg, Victor Cabrera, Patrice Bernier, Eric Alexander, Romario Williams, Kyle Bekker, Maxim Tissot

Referees

REF: Edvin Jurisevic

AR1: Kermit Quisenberry

AR2: Kyle Longville

4TH: Marcos De Oliveira

How to Watch:

Match time: 7:30 p.m. (ET)

Venue: Citrus Bowl - Orlando, FL

TV: My65 (locally) and Sun Sports (regionally)

Radio: 104.1 FM Real Radio (English), La Grande 1030 (Spanish)

Streaming: FOX Sports GO app

Twitter: For rapid reaction and live updates, follow along at @TheManeLand, as well as Orlando City's official Twitter feed (@OrlandoCitySC).

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