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Orlando City SC vs. Vancouver Whitecaps Notebook: Lions Fall in Stoppage Time

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It hurts now, but this will hopefully be the most crushing defeat suffered by the Lions for quite some time. We've got your news, notes, and post-match quotes right here.

Nick Leyva, The Mane Land

The mood around the Citrus Bowl was bleak late Saturday evening, following Orlando City's dramatic 1-0 loss to a visiting Vancouver Whitecaps side.

For his part, Head Coach Adrian Heath wanted nothing to do with platitudes about lessons learned and resiliency following the match.

"If I'm being perfectly honest, I think we had too many 'nearlys' all night," lamented Heath. "It was nearly good play. It was nearly a good ball. It was nearly a good cross. It was nearly a good setup. And unfortunately, at this level, nearly is not going to cut it."

Captain Kaká was less harsh in his assessment, though certain in his disappointment to be sure.

"It was one of the worst ways to lose a game," the Brazilian began, "but for me we have to take advantage of this opportunity. Even with a loss we had a lot of good things in this game, we have to improve a lot of things, we have to get better, to work some movements, most of our forwards, because we created a lot of opportunities."

So, the blunt, feisty coach was emotional and fiery, while the cool, even-keeled captain was calm and resilient. No surprises there! I certainly wouldn't be looking forward to practice Monday morning if I were an Orlando City player, though.

Stupid Mistakes and Giveaways

Coach Heath saved perhaps his most direct vitriol for the "stupid mistakes" and "cheap turnovers" that cost the team the match on the night. Without mentioning him by name, he was most critical of Darwin Ceren, who's stoppage time foul set up the free kick that gave Vancouver their goal.

"Don't give a stupid foul away when his guy's got his back to the game?" questioned Heath sarcastically when asked for his thoughts on the dramatic ending. "Maybe that'll help. To give a foul away in the dying minutes you're asking for trouble. We're giving silly free kicks away in dangerous areas."

Heath had a simple message going forward he shared with the media and team alike.

"I've just said to the guys there we have to take the lesson because I'm not going to put up with it week after week," Heath said. "The two chances we gave away were cheap turnovers. They aren't going to continue, I promise you."

Loss of Focus

While Kaká was focused on learning and moving on, a number of other players admitted that a lack of focus in the closing minutes may have led to the Lions' demise.

"We lost concentration for a few minutes and gave them a goal," said fullback Rafael Ramos bluntly. "We weren't thinking about defending at that moment. We wanted to win the game."

Potential focus issues were apparent in the first half as well, as Orlando nearly conceded twice just before heading in to the locker rooms. Veteran defender Aurelien Collin was asked about the team's focus in the final minutes.

"You have to be focused," replied the French center back. "If they score a goal, that's not good enough. That's the way this league is. You can win or lose at the last minute."

Collin seemed ready to chalk this one up to the growing pains of a young team playing its first season in MLS. However, he was also clear that that excuse would only last for so long.

"We are a very young team," Collin said. "Mistakes are OK once, but twice, it's not right. Now we're going to have to work on this and never repeat it again."

Collin Can't Win

As Aurelien was happy to tell us after the match, 'If that had been me, it would have been red." Judge Kekuta Manneh's awkward, two-footed challenge for yourself (and keep in mind that Manneh was already on a yellow card).