Most Orlando City fans have it easy. Most get to watch the team play, share their thoughts 140 characters at a time through social media and move on with their day. Writers are not like most fans. We have to sit there, pay close attention, no matter how bad things get, and try to put into words what we just saw.
Orlando City got trounced by Toronto FC for the second time in three weeks, falling a man behind late in the first half, then giving up five goals in the final 45 minutes to drop points in their fourth consecutive match.
Nobody played well and the referees were against Orlando yet again, as the team's playoff chances grow slimmer and slimmer.
Our five takeaways...
PRO Really Hates Orlando City
I feel like every time I write the five takeaways column, it's following a game in which Orlando City picked up another red card, as was the case yesterday when Rafael Ramos was sent off with a straight red card for the second time this season. Does Orlando City have a reputation around the league of being a dirty team? Probably, but unfairly so. The Lions were shown six cards in this game on just 13 total fouls, including two reds. Business as usual, I guess.
Piggybacking off the first takeaway, going down a man with less than 10 minutes to go in the first half of a road match is not ideal for any team, especially a week after having the same thing happen in Seattle, but it's no excuse for things going the way they did in the second half. A 1-0 or even 2-0 result is perfectly acceptable -- while awful, of course -- given the circumstances, but giving up five goals is an embarrassing way to go out. The team was playing for the point from the very beginning, but pressed too hard after falling behind and it hurt them even more. The red cards didn't help, but there was a lot more that went wrong to cost Orlando City this game.
Where's Our Captain?
It's widely understood that Kaká is one of the best players in MLS, but he's been leaving a lot to be desired over the last several weeks and is a major part of why Orlando City hasn't scored a goal in over 300 minutes. He isn't playing like the Designated Player people expect him to be, and the Lions need him to be playing well. Scoreless in nearly four straight matches is not ideal for a team still believing they have a shot at making the playoffs.
Moving On Without The Right Side
Thanks to the pair of red cards to right winger Adrian Winter and right back Rafael Ramos, the team now has to take on the Chicago Fire next weekend at the Citrus Bowl without their two starting right side players, as if scoring goals and winning a game at home wasn't going to be tough enough. The early bets say that Adrian Heath slots in Corey Ashe at right back to replace Ramos and Eric Avila on the right wing to replace Winter. Tyler Turner will also be available following his one-game suspension, but will Heath be confident to go back to him after a rough start in Seattle? It'll be something to watch at training throughout the week.
Consecutive Bryan Rochez Appearances
Bryan Rochez has seen the field in consecutive games for the third time this season, perhaps a positive sign that we may start seeing more of the Honduran DP down the final stretch of the season. Rochez appeared as a sub against Seattle and came on again yesterday. Of course, the team was already in losing positions and a man down in both games when he entered, meaning he'd have little chance to push forward for a goal, but hey, playing time is playing time.
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I'm sure you guys have plenty to say about Saturday's game, so go ahead and let us know in the comment section below.