Orlando City's winless drought continued as they fell 3-0 to a streaking New England Revolution side Saturday night. After a bounce back performance against the Chicago Fire that ended in 1-1 tie, but had fans wondering if the squad turned a corner, the Lions could not overcome the loss of Cyle Larin, Kaka, Darwin Ceren and Carlos Rivas.
After conceding shortly before the halftime, Orlando City pushed forward for the majority of the second half, but were never able to capitalize. Orlando City lost the possession battle and New England outshot the visiting Lions 21-8.
Let's get to the grades and man of the match for Orlando City.
Tally Hall (MOTM) --
OK, maybe it's not actually a 10, but damn if he wasn't impressive. Hall was by far the best player on the pitch, and the only player who kept Orlando City in the game. From his terrific saves in the 18th, 24th and 45th minutes to his thwarting of a deflected shot in the 57th minute, Hall's effort was world class.
Without Hall's performance we could have been looking at a 6-0 loss or even worse. We can settle on an 8.5.
Corey Ashe, 6 -- Coming in to the match, many were interested to see how Ashe and Luke Boden would work together on the same side of the field with Boden playing left midfielder. They were unspectacular, but as Ashe went down with an injury, we didn't get to see the two work together as long as we might have hoped. Ashe played well defensively and pushed forward when he could, but the Lions didn't have a ton of opportunities going at goal.
Aurelien Collin, 6 -- Collin was caught a little out of position on New England's first goal as he pushed a little too far over to the sideline, allowing Diego Fagundez to get behind him and get the shot off. Other than that mistake, Collin was fine, but he didn't stand out. Orlando was on its heels all game and Collin and the rest of the back four did a good job for the majority of the game keeping the Revolution from finishing on the opportunities they were getting.
David Mateos, 7.5 - Mateos was the best player on the field for Orlando City besides Tally Hall Saturday night. He did a fantastic job in a helping role on the back line covering for his teammates when New England players got behind them into attacking situations. His recovery on Charlie Davies in the first half was enough of a hindrance to cause Davies to mishit a header from a cross over the goal. Mateos has improved every match and he consistently cleared danger for the first 85 minutes of the match.
Rafael Ramos, 5.5 - Another unspectacular performance, Ramos at times disappeared in this one. His only memorable play is a bad giveaway in the 73rd minute when it looked like Orlando City could have had a dangerous attack building.
Servando Carrasco, 4.5 - He had too many negative plays for me to give him any positive feedback in this one. From his bad foul in the 14th minute, giving New England a dangerous free kick, to a bad giveaway six minutes later that led to a flurry of chances, Carrasco really struggled on a night Orlando City could not afford to have him struggle.
Cristian Higuita, 7 - Higuita is always solid defensively. He plays with a chip on shoulder and doesn't back down from anyone. He had his hands full with the likes of Lee Nguyen, but before he subbed out in the second half, most of New England's dangerous attacks turned out to be harmless in large part because of his tracking back defensively. He pushed forward heavily in the second and generated some decent chances for Orlando City. I would have liked to see him have more time with Rochez in the game.
MF/D, Luke Boden, 5 - Man, was he slow tonight. Boden, in my eyes, has never been known as a speedster, but he looked exceptionally slow getting to the ball tonight. He also failed to generate much attack for Orlando City, giving the ball away on two straight touches in the 40th and 41st minute, shortly before Orlando City conceded the first goal. Boden fits much better with this squad as a left back who occasionally pushes forward, rather than a midfielder who has more offensive responsibility.
Lewis Neal - 4 - Neal had some big shoes to fill with Kaka being out on international duty, and he wasn't able to do so. He spent more time in the match in the defensive midfield it seemed like, and generated no attack for the offense. It often seemed like Neal wasn't even on the pitch. He had some bad giveaways in the first half, and aside from him always being available, one has to start wondering why he keeps finding his way into the lineup.
Adrian Winter, 5.5 - Winter did a really nice job tracking back defensively to help for most of the game. It seemed like he covered the most ground of any Orlando City player besides Higuita, but nothing he did offensively was all that dangerous until the 87th minute when he he took a shot from point blank range that was saved. His work rate in his young career at Orlando City has been solid, but Winter still hasn't appeared to be a legitimate threat out wide.
Pedro Ribeiro, 6 - Everyone knows that when Ribeiro is on the field, you won't get a ton of pace from him, and this game was no different. His lack of speed made it more difficult for Orlando City to make anything happen on a counter attack. However, he was strong on the ball each time he had possession and battled often times with multiple New England defenders. But ultimately, he lacked the speed to run by any of them and Orlando City didn't have enough attacking players coming up to help.
Eric Avila (60'), 4.5 - Despite playing for about 34 minutes, Avila was nearly invisible. I don't remember hearing his name or seeing him do anything particularly positive or negative.
Bryan Rochez (67'), 7 - Rochez was one of Orlando City's best players, despite being on the field for less than half the match. That says something in itself. He showed some terrific footwork and skill and power in the 72nd minute shaking off New England defenders and spinning more times than a ballerina before unleashing a shot that missed the target. He showed more solid work in the 84th minute to get a shot on goal.
Danny Mwanga (79'), NA - Didn't play long enough to register a grade, but he was solid when he was on the field. Orlando City's mindset with him on the field was obviously much more offensively geared with them trailing, but Mwanga seemed to provide a legitimate threat to the defense. His work in the 87th minute helped to free Winter up for a shot that was stopped. He also sent a terrific ball to Rochez that provided some threat to the Revolution as well.
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That's how I saw it. Vote for your Man of the Match in our poll!