Merry Monday morning, Mane Landers! It was a busy Sunday with both Orlando City and the USWNT in action. Before we get into all of that, we need to wish a very happy 28th birthday to Dom Dwyer. Yes, Orlando City lost, but it’s not all bad, read on to find out why!
Orlando City Drops Another Road Match
Playing its fifth game in only 16 days and only three days removed from the loss to New York City FC, Orlando City traveled all the way across the country to take on Zlatan Ibrahimović and the LA Galaxy. It was a wild one in La La Land as Orlando City lost its eighth straight road match, 4-3. It’s never easy to accept any loss, but the Lions did play well, especially considering they’re still a makeshift side with key injured players. Having three goals on the scoreboard is better than four shots onto the woodwork.
Don’t forget to check back later today when the Bearded Guy hands out player grades and the man of the match and Sean Rollins will have your five takeaways from last night’s defeat.
USWNT Scores Late to Draw With the Matildas
In its second game of the 2018 Tournament of Nations, the United States Women’s National Team took on the last nation to which it lost. The USWNT got a late goal to draw with Australia. The Matildas got on the board first when Chloe Logarzo put home a shot just inside the right post in the 22nd minute on an assist by former Orlando Pride player Lisa De Vanna. Australia frustrated the U.S. until the very end and would have won if not for a stoppage-time goal by Lindsey Horan, who got her head on the end of a corner kick to draw the match for the U.S. The Tournament of Nations continues Thursday, with Australia vs. Japan at 5:45 p.m. ET, and the USWNT vs. Brazil at 8:30 p.m.
Brazil beat Japan in the early game with Marta scoring first for her nation to open the scoring. Read more in our match recap linked above.
O’Connor Gives Details on Transfer Window Plans
While James O’Connor focuses on Orlando City’s regular season with his one game at a time philosophy, he’s still giving some thought to the needs of his squad during the transfer window. O’Connor has said that he wants players that are working hard and giving maximum effort on the team. There’s been interest in some of Orlando City’s players, including Justin Meram who hasn’t been on the field for the Lions since the 4-1 loss to LAFC on July 7. O’Connor also has some ideas of the positions of need and potential players to meet those needs. Regardless, the depth of this injury-plagued team needs to be addressed.
Get to Know Orlando City’s Goalkeeper Coach
The life of a coach is never easy, and that’s the case with Orlando City’s new goalkeeping coach, Thabane Sutu. Jordan Culver of ProSoccerUSA.com caught up with Sutu, who is living and working in Central Florida without his family. His daughter didn’t want to leave school in the middle of the year — who can blame her? — and so he’s toughing it out without his loved ones for now.
Sutu’s wife, Motselisi, and 15-year-old daughter, Ayanda, are still in Kentucky. Sutu said Ayanda didn’t want to leave her school, and he wasn’t going to force her to do so.
“It’s kind of strange not to see them around,” Sutu said. “Making adjustments and stuff like that, we should be fine.”
“Anything,” he said. “It’s FaceTiming, it’s texting, that kind of stuff. All of the rituals that we do, getting my kid up, that kind of stuff. All the things that you’ve got to have in a household.”
Get to know Sutu better in the linked story.
- Ali Krieger makes a difference on the field for the Orlando Pride, and also makes a difference for the community with her AKFC events.
- USWNT player Morgan Brian has had quite a career even as young as she is. Having dealt with injuries, a stint with Lyon, and finally returning to NWSL and the USWNT, it’s been quite a trip. The 25-year-old finally seems to be hitting her stride during the Tournament of Nations.
- FC Cincinnati is making some moves prior to its arrival in MLS in 2019. It appears the team will be bringing in Fatai Alashe, currently with the San Jose Earthquakes and Fanendo Adi of the Portland Timbers.
That’s going to do it for this edition of Lion Links. Keep checking back for all the Orlando City, Pride, and national team news you can handle.