It was a rough night for Orlando City as the Lions were dominated by FC Dallas at Toyota Stadium, 4-0. Despite some brief spells of fight in the second half, the Lions never looked a danger to the now-first-place team in the Western Conference.
The first half was all FC Dallas, with Orlando City spending nearly the whole half defending. The visitors did have an early chance through Cyle Larin, but the young striker was unable to get a shot off. There was little work for Dallas goalkeeper Chris Seitz, who was never really challenged in the first 45 minutes. Orlando failed to register a single shot in the opening period and only three for the entire game (none on goal).
FC Dallas opened the scoring early, capitalizing on a mistake by Orlando City. From the top of the 18-yard box, Cristian Higuita played an emergency ball back toward David Mateos, who was unprepared to receive the ball as it inched toward him. Darwin Ceren attempted to play the ball out of danger but ended up guiding the ball over the end line and giving the Hoops a corner kick. The ensuing corner by Mauro Diaz found center back Walker Zimmerman, who was making a run toward the front post, allowing him to touch the ball past Joe Bendik giving the home side the lead after just 11 minutes.
Just nine minutes later, FC Dallas doubled its lead. After Atiba Harris won a 50-50 ball in the air, it fell to midfielder Maximiliano Urruti who quickly played it forward for a charging Michael Barrios. Streaming past Mateos and then losing Luke Boden, who got turned around, Barrios chipped the ball past Bendik, giving the home team a two-goal lead.
In the 39th minute, Dallas nearly made it three. Tommy Redding earned Orlando City it's first booking of the game after taking down Urruti, which gave the home team a free kick just outside the box. The short kick ended with Barrios laying the ball off to Diaz, whose shot went just wide of goal.
The Lions were lucky to escape the first half just down a pair. After receiving the ball on the top of the box, Fabian Castillo played a quick one-two with Kellyn Acosta, which got him past Seb Hines and in on goal. However, this time Bendik was up to the challenge, closing down the midfielder and taking the ball of the foot of Castillo.
Dallas created additional opportunities during first half stoppage time. First through a breakaway by Castillo following a costly turnover, and later through Urruti who found himself in on goal. Both times, Bendik came up big, keeping the game from getting out of hand before the intermission.
Making two substitutes at halftime, including bringing off the captain, Kaká, Orlando City came out much more positive to start the second half. Just four minutes after the break, a misplay by FC Dallas allowed Kevin Molino to intercept the ball and drive toward the end line. Crossing the ball a step too late, his low cross for Cyle Larin was cleared.
The Lions had their second good opportunity in the 57th minute. Brek Shea darted down the left side with open space before centering the ball toward Larin, who was sprinting toward goal. However, Matt Hedges was able to slide in and clear the ball before it reached the Canadian international.
The game got out of reach for the visitors five minutes later when FC Dallas added its third goal of the night. After a Luke Boden foul to the right of goal gave Dallas a free kick just outside of the box, Diaz sent a curling ball to the top of the six, which found the head of center back Matt Hedges who directed it past Bendik. Hedges was wide open after a pick on Mateos gave him a free header.
Putting the finishing touches on the game, FC Dallas collected a fourth goal two minutes into added time. A long ball over the top reached substitute Tesho Akindele, who beat the offside trap, drew Bendik off his line, and slid the ball over to an oncoming Fabian Castillo who touched the ball into the empty net.
The Lions were outplayed for the entirety of the 90 minutes in this one, seeing their worst loss of the 2016 season and tying for the second-worst loss in club history. Orlando City lost 5-0 at Toronto Aug. 22 of last year. Orlando City has now been outscored 6-0 in its first two matches against FC Dallas since joining MLS. The Hoops extended their home unbeaten streak to a club record 15 straight.
Outside of some nice saves by Bendik and the occasional attack, there was not much to cheer about for Orlando City fans.
The loss keeps the Lions in seventh in the Eastern Conference, just below the red line, with 20 points in their first 16 games. Orlando is level on points with Toronto FC, but the Reds have the tiebreaker in wins.
It'll be a short week for Orlando City as they take on the Houston Dynamo Friday night at Camping World Stadium.