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Orlando City at Inter Miami: Player Grades and Man of the Match

See how each player fared in the Lions’ first defeat since Aug. 22.

MLS: Orlando City SC at Inter Miami CF Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Orlando City SC saw its 12-match undefeated run come to an end at the hands of in-state rivals Inter Miami CF on Saturday with the South Florida-based side winning 2-1 at Inter Miami CF stadium in Fort Lauderdale.

Already guaranteed a spot in the playoffs, the Lions had an overall flat performance and after scoring an early goal with Daryl Dike saw their opponents come from behind to take all three points after an own goal off Orlando defender Robin Jansson and a late game-winning header by Inter Miami center back Leandro Gonzalez Pirez.

Here’s how each player performed.

Starters

GK, Pedro Gallese, 5.5 — The Peruvian returned to the lineup after missing three matches due to international duty and picked up right where he left off with a strong performance that denied some Miami goal-scoring opportunities. There was nothing he could have done to avoid Jansson’s own goal and on the second one, while it’s true he could have left the post to try to intercept the cross, it’s uncertain he would make it, considering the number of players between him and the ball.

D, Kyle Smith, 5.5 — The fullback played a decent match opposite his preferred right side. If on offense Smith looked at times uncomfortable pushing forward and getting to the end line, he was steady on defense with four clearances and controlled most of Inter Miami’s attempts from his side.

D, Robin Jansson, 4 — The Swedish defender was somewhat unlucky, but is also partially at fault for Inter Miami’s first goal as his action to clear Blaise Matuidi’s shot was unsuccessful as the wet ball pinged around the area. His performance didn’t really stand out but he managed three blocks.

D, Antonio Carlos, 6 (MotM) — The Brazilian played a key role in Orlando’s goal by feeding Dike with a great long pass that moved the ball forward more than 50 yards. He was solid for most of the match, especially in the air, registering impressive nine clearances, but wasn’t able to avoid Miami’s game-winning goal, as he was left to defend two players.

D, Ruan, 5 — The right back was as offensive-minded as usual, frequently pushing forward and managing to create dangerous situations with his runs on a couple of occasions and had a team-high five crosses, although none of them found an Orlando player at the end. His defensive game wasn’t solid, though, most notably when lost Julian Carranza inside the penalty box in the second half and left the Argentinean to hit the crossbar with a header.

MF, Sebas Méndez, 5.5 — Also returning from international play, the Ecuadoran brought some dynamism to Orlando’s midfield. He played in a more advanced role than usual at times moving ahead of Junior Urso and Andres Perea, Méndez wasn’t as active defensively, registering a single tackle in the entire match, but mostly took good care of the ball, though he did have a couple of dangerous turnovers and touches in his own end. He connected on 92.6% of his 27 passes.

MF, Junior Urso, 6 — The Brazilian performed his two-way role in his typically efficient fashion, impacting the game on both sides of the ball. The Brazilian led the team in tackles, with five, and passing accuracy, connecting 94.4% of his 36 attempts. On the low side were an unnecessary yellow card for dissent and his part in the defensive confusion on Miami’s second goal.

MF, Chris Mueller, 5 — Cash had an unusual yet relatively efficient performance, being more impactful on defense than offense. The winger was active on the defensive end with three tackles, two interceptions, and three clearances — one of them a pivotal one near the end of the first half on a corner kick that was on its way to finding Rodolfo Pizarro on the far post. He only registered one shot, though and wasn’t tidy with the ball at his feet.

MF, Andrés Perea, 4.5 — The Colombian covered a lot of ground in the center of the field, but again didn’t get to produce at a high level. He passed the ball at a good 84.4% rate, but didn’t create much out of it and his defensive game was unreliable with four fouls.

MF, Nani, 5.5 — The Portuguese had one of his weakest performance in recent weeks, not seeing a lot of the ball and struggling to be dangerous outside of dead-ball situations. His production improved near the end, when the Lions had more of the ball, and he finished the match with a team-high three shots.

F, Daryl Dike, 6 — The striker used two of his main assets — his physical strength and his composure — to score Orlando’s goal after he outmuscled Nicolas Figal to get control of a long pass and clinically finish it. He wasn’t much involved outside of that play and failed to connect what could be a dangerous pass inside the box during the second half.

Substitutes

F, Tesho Akindele (58’), 5 — The forward came in for Méndez in an attempt for Orlando to regain the control of the match and his best play came near the end of the match, when he made a run from the left and had his shot deflected by an Inter Miami defender.

F, Benji Michel (76’), 4 —The second-year player returned from injury and replaced Mueller with 15 minutes to go and slotted on the right side, but like the starter couldn’t find ways to produce much offensively outside from a good run inside the penalty box in which he won a corner kick for the Lions. Soon after, however, he missed an incredible scoring opportunity with goalkeeper John McCarthy on the ground.

MF, Joey Dezart (76’), N/A — The rookie midfielder subbed on for Dike near the end of the match and didn’t do much offensively or defensively during the 15 minutes he was on the field.

F, Matheus Aias (92’), N/A — The Brazilian forward entered the match in stoppage time to make his MLS debut, but he wasn’t on long enough to do much of anything.

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That’s the way I saw it. Let us know what you thought in the comments and vote for your Man of the Match.

Poll

Who was your Orlando City Man of the Match in the Lions’ 2-1 win over Columbus?

This poll is closed

  • 76%
    Mauricio Pereyra
    (127 votes)
  • 3%
    Chris Mueller
    (6 votes)
  • 1%
    Andres Perea
    (3 votes)
  • 14%
    Kyle Smith
    (24 votes)
  • 2%
    Antonio Carlos
    (5 votes)
  • 0%
    Tesho Akindele
    (0 votes)
  • 1%
    Other (write in comments)
    (2 votes)
167 votes total Vote Now