Welcome to another edition of "Match in GIFs," where we break down a few of the key moments from the game in Graphic Interchange Format.
Fun Fact: "GIF" is actually pronounced "Jif." At least, that's according to the guy who invented them.
Tonight's episode features Orlando City's 2-0 win over the hapless Colorado Rapids. There were goals from the usual suspects (Kaká and Cyle Larin), but it was the play of Carlos Rivas that impressed fans and coaches alike.
Without further adieu, here's what we saw:
Rafael Ramos is Really Good
Here's what probably should have been Orlando City's first goal, with Ramos setting up Kaká for a shot that somehow manages to stay out of the net. When a fullback with Ramos' impressive pace moves in the penalty area with such control, that's when you know you have a special player. The pass wasn't the obvious one, but the 20-year-old saw it and put it right on the money. (Not shown: Three minutes earlier, Ramos made a similar wide run and whipped in a perfect cross right to the head of Larin, whose header was saved.)
This one's just for fun, really. How about that blast?! That's goal of the week material if not for a pretty nice save from Clint Irwin.
Carlos Rivas' Amazing Night
No deep tactical explanation needed here. Rivas uses his world class speed to blow past the Rapids defender, and then puts a pinpoint cross on the money to Larin, who has little left to do but score.
This is actually my favorite highlight of the night. Here's the start of the counter attack that led to Kaká's goal.
Rivas makes a smart one-touch pass to Cristian Higuita, and then immediately takes off on a cross-field run. Watch how he pulls both Colorado defenders with him, and then look at how much space that leaves in front of Higuita.
Higuita meanders totally uncontested to the top of the penalty area, where he's able to lay the ball to the former Ballon d'Or winner, who makes the finish look easy. That run from Rivas will never show up on the stat sheet, but you can bet Head Coach Adrian Heath noticed.
Darwin Cerén and Sean St. Ledger Owe Tally Hall a Nice Steak Dinner
Couldn't find a good highlight of the Cerén stumble in the second half, but here's Tally Hall coming up huge early in the match. This one goes very differently if Colorado goes up 1-0 in the sixth minute, and Hall has a legitimate claim on Man of the Match with his two breakaway saves. St. Ledger and Cerén will need to tighten things up if the Lions hope to get results against better teams.