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Orlando City vs. Philadelphia Union: Player Grades and Man of the Match

How did your favorite Lions perform in a 3-1 loss on the road?

MLS: Orlando City SC at Philadelphia Union John Jones-USA TODAY Sports

Orlando City has now lost three straight games after falling 3-1 on the road against the Philadelphia Union. The Lions did well to bounce back from a goal late in the first half, but Union forward Kacper Przybylko scored a brace to take all three points.

Let’s dive into how each Lion rated and who was our Man of the Match.

Starters

GK, Pedro Gallese, 5.5 — The Peruvian didn’t have much of a chance at stopping the Union’s first, as it was deflected by Kyle Smith and sent the opposite direction. Gallese was closer to stopping the Union’s second goal, but he wasn’t able to go from covering the near post to protecting the center of goal quickly enough to stop a fast shot from Przybylko. He guessed wrong on the penalty late in the match and that was the nail in the coffin for Orlando. Gallese made five saves and earned a yellow card for rushing out and tackling Sergio Santos before the forward could sprint towards goal. El Pulpo was successful on 76% of his 21 passes and completed seven of his 12 long balls as well.

D, Kyle Smith, 4.5 — Smith played at left back in his first start since Aug. 18 and struggled in the game’s key moments. Orlando had a good chance to counter after a free kick from the Union, but Smith’s pass to the pack of Lions charging upfield was stopped and the Union scored shortly after. Smith was also unable to clear the ball on the end line in the buildup on the Union’s second goal. He had a key pass by setting up a shot for Mauricio Pereyra, but Smith didn’t have any crosses and was subbed off in the 68th minute for Joao Moutinho. Smith led the Lions with six tackles and also had two interceptions. He had 48 touches and only completed 16 of his 25 passes for a 64% success rate.

D, Antonio Carlos, 4.5 — Carlos was sent off in the 88th minute for bringing down Sergio Santos in the box and now won’t be available in Orlando’s next match. It was a tough way to end a frustrating game for Carlos, who wasn’t able to close down on Przybylko’s first goal in time to stop his shot. Carlos had six clearances, a tackle, an interception, a defensive block, 53 touches, and was successful on 83% of his 42 passes. If there is any silver lining to Carlos’ red card, it’s that it should allow him a chance to reset and come back stronger considering the defense has conceded 12 goals in four games.

D, Robin Jansson, 6 — The Swedish defender led the team with seven interceptions, doing a decent job to cut off passes as the Union tried to infiltrate the defense. Jansson added four clearances and three tackles for a decent defensive performance despite the score. He had 61 touches and completed 84% of his 37 passes to help Orlando build out of the back. Jansson also had a key pass, crossing in a good ball for Tesho Akindele to get a piece of.

D, Rodrigo Schlegel, 5 — It was Schlegel’s first time starting since Aug. 17 and he had a busy afternoon with six clearances, a tackle, and a defensive block. The center back was struck in the face by Przybylko right before the Union’s goal, but play went on and the goal stood after video review. Schlegel was substituted off in the 75th minute as Orlando tried to change its shape to score. He finished with 33 touches and completed 92% of his 24 passes while also picking up a yellow card. We will likely see Schlegel on Saturday against the New England Revolution now that Carlos is suspended.

D, Ruan, 6 — After getting a taste for goal last week, Ruan scored his second goal in MLS with a great header to bring Orlando level in the second half. The right back lurked around the back post and signaled his run for Mauricio Pereyra to serve him an uncontested ball. Only one of his four crosses was successful, but that cross was nearly an assist as he whipped in a good ball into the box for Junior Urso. Ruan benefited most from Orlando’s formation as he was able to push further upfield while the center backs stayed back. As a result, he didn’t have any defensive stats and was too far upfield on the counter to help on the Union’s first goal. The speedster had 43 touches and completed 24 of his 28 passes for a decent 86% success rate.

MF, Junior Urso, 6 — The Bear nearly scored in the 74th minute after getting his head on a good cross by Ruan, but Philadelphia goalkeeper Andre Blake came up with a good save to deny him. It was his best of three shots, one blocked and the other on target but saved in the bottom right corner. Urso led the Lions with two key passes and completed 24 of his 32 passes for a 75% success rate. He did well on the defensive end as well, making six interceptions and two tackles to stop Philadelphia from outright dominating the midfield. It wasn’t Urso’s best performance, but he was one of the better Lions on the field in this one.

MF, Joey DeZart, 5 — The 23-year-old wasn’t able to continue after going down with an injury in the 20th minute. With the Union on the front foot early on, DeZart wasn’t able to make much of an impact beyond a tackle and a successful dribble. He completed four of his six passes and had nine touches. Given how thin Orlando is in the midfield at the moment, hopefully the injury isn’t too serious.

MF, Mauricio Pereyra, 6.5 (MotM) — The Uruguayan delivered a perfect cross for Ruan to head into the back of the net and give Orlando a lifeline on the road after a difficult first half. It was Pereyra’s ninth assist of the season and he wore the captain’s armband with Nani suspended. His assist was his only successful cross of the game and he completed 40 of his 50 passes for an 80% success rate, which isn’t too bad considering the length of some of his unsuccessful attempts. While he had three shots, two were blocked and the one on target didn’t give Blake much trouble. He played all 90 minutes and chipped in defensively with a tackle, an interception, and a defensive block while leading the team with 73 touches. The 31-year-old is our Man of the Match for keeping his composure throughout the game and serving a perfect ball for the team’s smallest player to score off a header.

MF, Benji Michel, 5 — Michel had a rough time against the Union. He was only successful on one of his five attempted dribbles and just couldn’t get much going offensively, although he did have a key pass late in the match to tee up a shot for Pereyra. Michel played every minute of the match but didn’t have a shot and was shown a yellow card for simulation after going down in the box. The winger had 38 touches and completed 75% of his 16 passes. The winger did help out defensively with three clearances, but didn’t make much of a difference in the match.

F, Tesho Akindele, 5.5 — The Canadian striker did well when pressing and hustling back to defend, racking up two tackles and an interception in 67 minutes of action. But Akindele wasn’t able to get much done on the offensive end despite doing well to win possession. He had two shots, one off target and the other deflected, and no key passes as Orlando struggled to create chances throughout the match. Akindele finished with 37 touches and 21 passes at an 86% success rate.

Substitutes

MF, Raul Aguilera Jr. (20’), 5 — The Homegrown Player came on in the 20th minute for an injured DeZart. Aguilera didn’t make much of a difference in the match, but did contribute defensively with two interceptions and a clearance. He didn’t get forward much and completed 27 of his 32 passes for an 84% success rate and had 42 touches as well. It was the longest shift Aguilera has played for the Lions this season and he picked up his first yellow card in MLS to stop a potential counter.

D, Joao Moutinho (67’), 5.5 — The left back came on for Kyle Smith to provide the Lions some more firepower to score. Both of Moutinho’s crosses were unsuccessful and he didn’t have any key passes. Moutinho didn’t have any defensive stats, but had 26 touches and was successful on 79% of his 19 passes as he tried to build possession along the left side.

MF, Silvester van der Water (75’), 5 — Like Dike and Moutinho, van der Water was brought on for the Lions to equalize but unable to make much of a difference. Van der Water had just seven touches and was accurate on three of his five passes. He didn’t have any shots, crosses, key passes, or dribbles in the loss. That being said, it was nice to see van der Water take the field considering his availability for the match was uncertain.


That’s how I saw things play out in Orlando’s loss to Philadelphia on the road. Make sure to weigh in on how you feel about the grades in the comments below and to vote for who you think deserves the title of Man of the Match.

Poll

Who was your Orlando City Man of the Match in a 3-1 loss to the Philadelphia Union?

This poll is closed

  • 56%
    Mauricio Pereyra
    (13 votes)
  • 21%
    Ruan
    (5 votes)
  • 8%
    Junior Urso
    (2 votes)
  • 13%
    Other (Comment Below)
    (3 votes)
23 votes total Vote Now