The Lions failed to create hardly any scoring opportunities to back up Tally Hall, who yet again did his best to keep Orlando in the game, as City fell short of grabbing any points in the 3-0 loss to the New England Revolution.
Our five takeaways from the match:
It Was a Tough Ask to Begin With
Orlando City knew what it was going up against facing one of the hottest teams in the league, on the road, without three of its best players -- Kaká, Cyle Larin, and Darwin Ceren. To be fair, the first 45 minutes were played about as well as they could have been, given the tactics and lineup in place. The Lions couldn't play through the middle of the field and struggled all game to control the ball. Does Orlando win this game with their Big Three in the lineup? Don't know. But the game might have been very different.
Tally Hall for Goal Keeper of the Year
The question is not whether Tally Hall will be nominated for MLS Save of the Week for his performance against the Revs, but rather, which save should be in the running? As has been the case so often this season, Hall kept Orlando City in the match with a handful of incredible saves, continuing to cement his nickname as "Tally Wall" among Lions supporters. I see the MLS Goalkeeper of the Year award in his future if he keeps this up.
Pedro Ribeiro is Not the Answer Up Top
Somewhat popular opinion here: I'm not a fan of Ribeiro being used as the lone forward. When the team plays to him they don't play well. I'm a fan of Ribeiro and have been ever since Orlando City picked him up in the Expansion Draft, but his speed just isn't close to being good enough to run with the over-the-head, through-ball style of play they use with him.
Rafael Ramos Is Still a Little Rusty
Coming into the night, Rafael Ramos had played a total of 36 minutes over the last six weeks for Orlando City, and it was pretty obvious from his play last night. The young right back was beaten on several different opportunities, including Diego Fagundez's opening goal in the first half. Fans expect him to be on top of his game each time out, but maybe cut him some slack this time since he hasn't seen much game action lately.
Bryan Rochez is Good at Soccer
We haven't seen much of Orlando City's Honduran DP this season, but maybe we should. Rochez only played in 22 minutes off of the bench last night, coming in for Ribeiro late in the second half, but it was a pretty good 22-minute shift by the 20-year-old. He showed some impressive skills in a one-on-one situation that, unfortunately, didn't lead to anything, and posted three shots in total. Not a bad night, and hopefully we start seeing more of Rochez as the season winds down.
Next up, Sporting KC.