If it feels like its been awhile since Orlando City played a game, and that’s because it has been. By the time Orlando has its first match in the month of June, it will have been 18 days since the Lions lost 3-1 to FC Dallas at home. Soon though, OCSC will get things back underway after the June international break and will play four matches during the sixth month of the year. Before that happens, let’s take a look into the crystal ball and try to predict the outcomes.
June 15: Orlando City at New England Revolution
The Lions’ first game of the month doesn’t come until exactly halfway through the month, when OCSC travels north to take on the Revolution. It’s been a sluggish start to the season for the team that won the Supporters Shield going away in 2022, and the Revs will look a little different than the last time Orlando saw them. Tajon Buchanan has since moved to Club Brugge and Adam Buksa was sold to RC Lens mere days ago. The Revs will be on short rest after a road game against Sporting Kansas City on Sunday, but Orlando City will likely be without Pedro Gallese, whose Peru team faces Australia on Monday afternoon with a World Cup berth on the line. I think Orlando will look like a team that hasn’t played in 18 days.
Prediction: 2-1 to New England.
June 18: Orlando City vs. Houston Dynamo
Three days later is a home game against the Dynamo back at Exploria Stadium. The Dynamo already have more than half the points they accumulated during the 2021 season and have done so behind Darwin Quintero and Sebastian Ferreira, who have five goals and one assist and five goals and three assists, respectively. Houston’s scoring drops off after that though, and the aforementioned duo have knocked in 10 of the team’s 17 goals — a number which is on the lower end of the Western Conference. Houston also only has one win away from home — a 3-0 drubbing of the LA Galaxy back on May 22.
Prediction: 2-0 to Orlando City.
June 24: Orlando City at FC Cincinnati
Next up is a road game against FC Cincinnati a week later. Like Houston, FCC is much improved from last year, and is one point away from matching its points total from the 2021 season. It’s been a mostly solid start for the team, but things aren’t perfect yet. The defense seems to be a little suspect as the 25 goals the team has conceded trails only Montreal and Toronto in the East, who have given up 26 and 27, respectively. While that number is a little skewed by a 5-0 loss to Austin FC on opening day and 3-2 and 4-3 losses to New England and Montreal, respectively, FCC has also only kept three clean sheets in 14 games, so opportunities should be there for the taking. Combine all that with a 4-2 record for Cincy at home and I think Orlando has a good chance to go and get some points.
Prediction: 2-1 to Orlando City.
June 29: Orlando City vs. Nashville SC (U.S. Open Cup)
The final match of the month is a U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal date with Nashville SC, which will be five days after the Cincy match. Nashville has been good to start the year, with a 6-4-4 record and 22 points — good for sixth place in a competitive Western Conference. Things haven’t been super straightforward in cup play, with extra time necessary for a 3-2 win over Atlanta United in the round of 32 and an 89th-minute winner to avoid extra time against Louisville City in the round of 16. However, the defense remains as solid as ever and has given up a stingy 16 goals in 14 games in league play. Hany Mukhtar and CJ Sapong continue to be dangerous and have six goals and five assists and five goals and three assists, respectively. Games between these two teams always seem to be close though, and I don’t think this one will be any different.
Prediction: 1-1 after 120 minutes, with Orlando City advancing 4-3 on penalty kicks.
Those are my guesses at how the month of June will play out, with six out of a possible nine points taken in the league and a trip booked to the U.S. Open Cup semifinals if I’m correct. All in all, it wouldn’t be a bad run of results, so let’s hope I’m right.