Orlando City finished its home slate of the 2017 MLS season yesterday in a 1-0 loss to the Columbus Crew. The Lions will now travel to Philadelphia to end the season against the Union, before returning home to host Puerto Rico’s national team. Here are my takeaways from the game against the Crew.
Thank You, Captain
With Orlando City officially eliminated from the postseason, yesterday’s game was all about Kaká. The club captain over the past three years, Kaká announced he would be departing the club last week. This was a great opportunity for the fans to say thank you and goodbye.
A New Era
With Kaká leaving, a new era will start for the Lions next season. Jonathan Spector will likely be the new captain and players like Yoshimar Yotun and Dom Dwyer, who both joined in the summer transfer window, will take over veteran leadership roles.
A Fitting End
Keeping opposing players onside has been a trademark of the team this season. While it did hold its line on some occasions, the back line was caught too many times yesterday, allowing the Crew opportunities on goal.
Orlando City’s failure to make the playoffs in any of the last three years has had an impact at the gate. Despite it being Kaká’s last home league game for the club, “ORLANDO” on the upper, east-side seats of the stadium was clearly visible, showing the small attendance.
A Great First Season in Our New Home
Orlando City has been waiting for a home of its own since 2013. With one season complete, Orlando City Stadium now truly feels like home. Now, with the club in MLS and playing in its own stadium, it can hopefully focus on building a winning tradition for the future.
Despite the poor results, it’s been a fun 2017 season. Those are my takes from the last home game of the season and we look forward to covering the club for one more game this year and in 2018.