Welcome to your open thread for the second and final regular-season meeting between Orlando City and the New England Revolution. The teams drew 2-2 back on May 8 at the Citrus Bowl, with the Revs leaping in front 2-0 only for the Lions to roar back in the game’s final 20 minutes to split the points.
Orlando City (7-12-8, 29 points), gave up goals on a pair of turnovers by Amobi Okugo and Rafael Ramos that were cashed in by Charlie Davies and Kelyn Rowe. Ramos made up for his mistake with a perfect cross to Cyle Larin to put Orlando City on the board. Aurelien Collin headed home the late equalizer in the 90th minute off a Luke Boden cross. New England (10-9-7, 37 points) must have thought they had the game won but credit to the Lions for controlling play in the second half and eventually finding a way back into the match.
The Lions will be without a host of key players, including left wing Carlos Rivas (yellow card suspension), Kaká (international duty), Darwin Ceren (international duty), and Larin (international duty). Meanwhile, only Jermaine Jones (international duty) will be out of the Revs’ lineup. Hey, it’s really never easy for an expansion team but hopefully by season’s end we’ll have used up a decade’s worth of misfortune in this inaugural MLS year.
We could see Tony Cascio back in the 18 tonight (and possibly even in the starting XI) and Brek Shea is nearing a return, although he may still be a game away. Right wing Adrian Winter and right back Rafael Ramos are back from their red card suspensions, at least.
Just a couple of weeks ago, the Revs were just three points ahead of Orlando City. Now the Lions sit eight points behind New England and have played one more match. It’s unlikely City can catch New England now, but winning an unlikely three points on the road against a hot Revolution squad (4-0-1 in their last five) could help the Lions solidify their position in a tight Eastern Conference playoff race.
But even one point on the road against a club that’s conceded only three goals in the last five matches would be a great result for such a depleted expansion side. Oh, and the teams are playing on temporary grass tonight instead of the awful Gillette artificial turf.
Here's your mandatory content to prep for tonight:
- Austin Siegel's match preview and final score prediction
- This week’s PawedCast features Seth from The Bent Musket on what we can expect from the Revs
- Wade Williams on what we’ve learned from the prior meeting with New England
Get dumped then, New England.
Orlando City (4-3-3)
Goalkeeper: Tally Hall
Defenders: Corey Ashe, Aurelien Collin, David Mateos, Rafael Ramos
Midfielders: Cristian Higuita, Lewis Neal, Servando Carrasco
Forwards: Luke Boden, Pedro Ribeiro, Adrian Winter
Bench: Earl Edwards Jr., Tommy Redding, Estrela, Eric Avila, Tony Cascio, Danny Mwanga, Bryan Rochez
New England Revolution (4-2-3-1)
Goalkeeper: Bobby Shuttleworth
Defenders: Chris Tierney, Jose Goncalves, Andrew Farrell, Jeremy Hall
Defensive Midfielders: Scott Caldwell, Daigo Kobayashi
Attacking Midfielders: Diego Fagundez, Lee Nguyen, Kelyn Rowe
Forward: Charlie Davies
Bench: Brad Knighton, Kevin Alston, London Woodberry, Teal Bunbury, Steve Neumann, Juan Agudelo, Andy Dorman
REF: Mark Geiger
AR1: Greg Barkey
AR2: Logan Brown
4TH: Jorge Gonzalez
How to Watch:
Match time: 7:30 p.m. (ET)
Venue: Gillette Stadium -- Foxborough, MA
TV: FOX35 (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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