Orlando City went on the road to take on the New England Revolution and fell 2-1. Adam Buksa scored in the ninth minute, but Daryl Dike was able to equalize in the 18th minute. However, an own goal later in the first half and a missed penalty in the second half doomed the Lions as they lost their fourth straight match.
Let’s dive into how each Lion rated and who was our Man of the Match.
GK, Pedro Gallese, 5.5 — It was the first time Gallese didn’t record a save for Orlando since May of this year. The Revolution were only able to get one shot on target, but Gallese wasn’t able to stop a bouncing shot on the volley from Buksa in front of goal at point-blank range. On the Revolution’s second goal, a low cross from Tajon Buchanan was delivered quickly enough that Gallese couldn’t do much about it pinballing off Rodrigo Schlegel and into the goal. The Peruvian goalkeeper also rushed out of goal to cut off DeJuan Jones, but the left back made a nice pass to Buksa, who should’ve scored again but sent the ball into the stands. Gallese was successful on 17 of his 24 passes for a 71% completion rate and was accurate on eight of his 14 long balls.
D, Joao Moutinho, 6 — The left back had a tough assignment against Buchanan for most of the night. In the 35th minute, he was beaten by some fancy footwork from the skilled Canadian, who used the open space to whip in a low cross that bounced off of Schlegel and into the goal. Despite that, Moutinho ended up having a decent defensive performance, particularly late in the match with the Lions trailing as he tracked back to make crucial stops. Moutinho had a team-high five interceptions and also three tackles, a clearance, and a defensive block. His only cross of the night was also his only key pass as he whipped in a good ball to Andres Perea in the box, but the header was off target. Moutinho had two shots late in the match, not making good contact on one and attempting a bicycle kick late that looked good but was deflected. The 23-year-old also led the team with 79 touches and 51 passes, completing 40 of the latter for a 78% success rate as he often tried serving Benji Michel some long passes upfield to no avail.
D, Robin Jansson, 5.5 — The Swede wasn’t in a great position on Buksa’s goal, although that may be more of a testament of how pinpoint the cross was from Gustavo Bou on a counter than Jansson’s defensive ability. Jansson wasn’t able to get his head on that cross and couldn’t intercept Buchanan’s low ball into the box that wound up in the net. The center back had five clearances and a tackle in a fairly quiet outing. Jansson had 47 touches and 38 passes at a 92% completion rate as helped Orlando build out of the back at times. He was also shown a yellow card that will make him miss Wednesday’s match on the road against Nashville SC. Jansson has played every minute in Orlando’s last 11 games so the thin silver lining here is that he will get some rest before the home stretch.
D, Rodrigo Schlegel, 5.5 — Just a week after being elbowed by Kacper Przybylko, Schlegel had to deal with another physical center forward in Buksa. Their battle for positioning in the box included plenty of shoving from Buksa and led to Schlegel’s own goal as a low cross by Buchanan pinged off of him and into the net. Schlegel led the team with six clearances and also had four interceptions, two tackles, and two defensive blocks to help limit the Revs’ offense. The center back had 49 touches and completed 24 of his 28 passes for an 86% success rate and we’ll likely see more of him this Wednesday alongside Antonio Carlos due to Jansson’s suspension.
D, Ruan, 6 — The right back slipped on the turf just prior to New England’s opener and Bou took full advantage to sprint down the field and deliver the cross for Buksa’s goal in the ninth minute. While Ruan was a liability on defense at times, finishing with just one clearance and no tackles or interceptions, he did give the Lions plenty of opportunities on offense. The speedster had little issue beating defenders and led the team with four key passes, including a nice cutback pass for Dike in the 24th minute. His crossing ability still leaves plenty to be desired as he was inaccurate on all five of his attempts. Ruan had 60 touches in this match, the third-most on the team, and he was successful on 36 of 39 passes for a good 92% completion rate.
MF, Junior Urso, 6 — The Bear hustled up and down the field all night long, racking up 63 touches and completing 45 of his 49 passes for a strong 92% success rate as he worked hard to serve as an outlet for other players to build possession. Urso had a tackle, an interception, and a block on the defensive end and on offense he had a shot that was blocked and a key pass. There were a few mishaps here and there, but overall it was a fairly efficient night for the Brazilian.
MF, Andres Perea, 5 — There was certainly some rust from Perea in his return from suspension. The 20-year-old was often a step behind in the midfield as the Revs passed around him with ease to then pick apart the defense. This was shown on the Revs’ second goal as the opposition worked around him to set up a one-on-one for Buchanan against Moutinho. However, he did have four clearances in the match and also chipped in with two interceptions, a tackle, and a block on the defensive end. Perea also led the team with three shots, the best coming from him pouncing on a loose ball in the box that Turner was able to save. That was his only shot on target as one shot was blocked and another headed wide from Moutinho’s great cross. In 87 minutes of action, Perea had 54 touches and 39 passes at an 85% success rate, although his inaccurate attempts weren’t all that difficult.
MF, Sebas Mendez, 6 — It was the Ecuadorian midfielder’s first game since his injury on July 17 and he did a decent job giving the Lions some stability in the midfield. This was particularly true in the second half when Mendez came up with crucial tackles to stop the revs on the counter while Orlando pushed forward to try and score. Mendez was subbed out in the 70th minute and finished with three tackles and an interception while not making much of an impact on offense. He had 55 touches and 47 passes at an 85% success rate as he was eased back into action.
MF, Mauricio Pereyra, 6.5 — Pereyra fed a nice ball to Dike in the box for his 10th assist of the season. It was one of many great passes from the Uruguayan, but his best of the night was a perfect first touch to serve Dike the ball again in a play that resulted in a penalty for Orlando. Although he only finished with two key passes, Pereyra pulled the strings for Orlando for most of the night and had 39 passes at an 87% success rate, which is pretty good considering the distance and difficult angles of some of his attempts. His two crosses from free kicks didn’t find their target, but were decent balls and he was accurate on his lone corner kick. Pereyra played all 90 minutes and ended the game with 50 touches, two key passes, and a shot from distance that went high and wide of goal.
F, Benji Michel, 4.5 — Michel didn’t get much done with only 14 touches in 57 minutes of play. He had no shots or key passes and his only cross was inaccurate. His best opportunity came in the second half when he ran along the end line with the ball, but he wasn’t able to make anything of it. Michel had no defensive stats either and only had five passes at an 80% success rate.
F, Daryl Dike, 6.5 (MotM) — Dike’s goal was a great one as he muscled past former collegiate teammate Henry Kessler in the box and fired a shot that was too powerful and too low for Turner to keep out. His only other shot in the match was from a good pass by Ruan, but he wasn’t able to make clean contact and it went wide. Dike won four fouls during the match, including a penalty that gave Orlando a golden opportunity that was squandered. It was Dike’s first time playing all 90 minutes for Orlando since returning from the Gold Cup and he had 37 touches and 14 passes at a subpar 57% completion rate as he tried to hold possession and create chances. More shots should be expected from the forward over the course of a game, but the Revs did focus on shutting him down after his goal. He was also a force in the air, using his large frame and physicality to win the ball upfield and he came up with two headed clearances on the Revolution’s set pieces. Dike is our Man of the Match for scoring a great goal while trailing on the road and earning a penalty that could have wound up salvaging a point for the Lions.
F, Nani (57’), 5.5 — Orlando’s captain had a chance to equalize with a penalty kick in the 75th minute, but his shot was stopped by Turner. Nani opted to shoot straight down the middle and Turner moved to his right but hesitated and got just enough of his body behind the ball to deflect it high and out of harm’s way. His only other shot of the match was blocked and his key pass to Urso set up a shot that was also blocked. None of his crosses from free kicks found their target, but his sole cross in open play was accurate. Nani completed 13 of his 15 passes for an 87% success rate and had 27 touches and he tried to bring Orlando level. The Designated Player hasn’t scored since Aug. 7 and Orlando will need him to lead the team during the final stretch of the season.
MF, Silvester van der Water (70’), 5.5 — With Orlando trailing in the second half, van der Water gave the team a bit of edge on the offense. The Dutchman had two shots, sending his first just wide and having his second blocked in stoppage time. He had 12 touches in the match and completed five of his seven passes for a 71% success rate. Van der Water wasn’t able to provide a goal for Orlando, but did give the team some needed energy when he had the ball at his feet in the attacking third.
F, Tesho Akindele, (87’) N/A — Coming on late to give the Lions another attacker while trailing, Akindele’s biggest contribution was winning a foul in a dangerous position for Orlando. He didn’t have any shots or key passes but gave the Revolution another big body to worry about alongside Dike. In a short shift, Akindele had nine touches and was successful on three of his six passes.
D, Kyle Smith (87’), N/A — Smith replaced Schlegel late in the match and completed three of his four passes. It was a quiet cameo for Smith as he had no offensive or defensive stats and just four touches.
That’s how I saw things play out in Orlando’s 2-1 loss 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.
Who was your Orlando City Man of the Match in a 2-1 loss to the New England Revolution on the road?
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