Orlando City needed a win and instead lost. The 2-1 defeat at the hands of the Vancouver Whitecaps all but sealed the team’s playoff fate this season. Tommy Redding scored an own-goal nine minutes in, then Brek Shea doubled the lead for the visitors in the second half. Cyle Larin’s goal off of the bench wasn’t enough to bring the Lions back into the game, as they officially fell to ninth place in the Eastern Conference standings.
On to the player grades.
GK, Joe Bendik, 6 — Joe only made two saves on the night against four shots. He caught a tough break in the first half with the own-goal and can’t be blamed much for Brek Shea’s goal after the defense put him in a tough spot. I’ll give him the average grade just because.
D, Donny Toia, 6 — Toia didn’t have much work to do defensively with Vancouver playing on the defensive end for most of the match. He picked up one tackle, one interception, and two clearances, while completing 88 percent of his passes. He came off in the 57th minute for Dillon Powers.
D, Tommy Redding, 5 — It was a rough night for the young American center back. He started things off with an own-goal in the ninth minute to put Vancouver up 1-0, and also picked up a yellow card late in the match. He did finish with 89 percent passing accuracy, three tackles, a couple of fouls won, and was even credited with a chance created, but the mistakes still haunted him.
D, Leo Pereira, 5 — Pereira had a strong first half and for the most part had a good outing, but one really bad giveaway in the midfield led to Shea’s game-winning goal. Other than that, he had four tackles, five clearances, won two fouls, and completed 86 percent of his passes.
D, Scott Sutter, 6.5 — Sutter had 11 crosses on the night and a chance created with 81 percent passing accuracy. Defensively, he was a workhorse as always. You can also add two tackles, two fouls won, and even two shots to his stat line tonight.
M, Cristian Higuita, 7 — Higuita picked up where he left off last weekend against the Columbus Crew. He was one of the most active players on the field from the first whistle, completed 85 percent of his game-high 71 passes, made three tackles, and won four fouls while conceding three. He was also responsible for three chances created, tied for second most on the team.
M, Yoshimar Yotún, 8 (MOTM) — Yotún has been as advertised since joining Orlando City, and on Saturday night he was worth the Designated Player spot yet again. He was arguably Orlando’s best player on the attack as he created a game-high six chances, including a beautifully served cross to in to Cyle Larin for the goal — Yoshi’s first MLS assist. He did have a team-worst 75 percent passing accuracy on 65 attempts, but also had the ball at his feet a lot throughout the night, compiling 99 touches. Yotún is a really good player and will be a key to Orlando’s success in 2018.
M, Giles Barnes, 6 — Barnes had four total shots and completed 96 percent of his passes, and clanked a shot off of the crossbar in the final minutes of the match. Defensively, he had one interception.
M, Kaká, 6 — It wasn’t a bad night for Kaká, I’d say, but that doesn’t make it a great one either. He created two chances, but once again he didn’t have that big game-changing moment that you expect a $7 million player to have. I can’t blame him at this point. He’s 35, but you expect more from him each week. Kaká did complete 79 percent of his passes
F, Carlos Rivas, 3.5 — Rivas was given the starting nod over Cyle Larin mostly because he had been playing much better of late than the Canadian, but he showed none of that in this one. He had 29 touches and did create one chance on 13 passes, but none of his five shots were on target — or anywhere near it for that matter. Disappointing night from the Colombian, who was subbed off at halftime.
F, Dom Dwyer, 6.5 — Dom was Dom, just without the goals. He found himself in the middle of the action plenty of times throughout the night, creating three chances, firing three shots (none on target, though), and connecting on 87.5% of his passes.
(46’) F, Cyle Larin, 7 — Surprisingly starting this one from the bench, Larin came on to start the second half and tallied his 10th goal of the season in the 62nd minute off of a Yotún cross. He totaled three shots, two on target, on his 18 touches. He connected on 80% of his passes and was dispossessed only once.
(57’) M, Dillon Powers, 5.5 — Powers came on for Toia in the second half for his Orlando City debut. He created one chance, had one shot, and completed 80 percent of his passes. However, it was noticeable that he needs time to build up more chemistry with his teammates, crossing up both Kaká and Yotún on occasion on both the giving and receiving end of a few passes.
(83’) M, Antonio Nocerino, N/A — Noce came on late and by then there wasn’t much he could add to the game, although he did substitute on for Higuita, who left the match without picking up a yellow card.
That’s the way I saw the individual performances from a disappointing result against the Whitecaps. Be sure to vote for your Orlando City Man of the Match below.
Who was your Orlando City Man of the Match from a 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps?
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