Atlanta United Match Preview
Orlando City look to erase the past by finally beating their rivals Atlanta United
Here. We. Fucking. Go. This is the match that we've all been looking forward to ever since we've started to look like a competent team under Oscar Pareja. We all know that Atlanta have been struggling recently but all of that goes out the window. We could be first and they could be last and it would still be a tough match. Wanna know why? Because it's a rivalry and no matter each team's current position, both of them will be up for the fight.
1. Shut down Pity Martinez
Pity is an excellent player who can win matches all on his own. He has the quality to really do some damage against us if we aren't careful. The good thing is, he might be the only one we have to focus on. Usually, we have to worry about Josef, Barco, and Pity but with Josef out and Barco questionable, the focus narrows down to just Pity. If we stop him, their attack is manageable. The striker position would either be Adam Jahn (a USL player) or Erick Torres (a new signing who, while decent, is no Josef Martinez). The opposite wing of Pity will probably be Rossetto or Mulraney. Nothing too scary. It's simple. If you stop Pity, you stop their offense.
2. Start fast for once
We have conceded the first goal in our last three games. Two of those came within the first 15 minutes. That can't happen here. The mental effect of going down early to a team that we have never beaten before will be a heavy burden for us to overcome. Heavier than any of the others. Could we do it? Of course we could and if we do concede early on I back us to claw our way back into the game but doing so will be harder in this match than the previous ones. Let's not have to worry about it by starting the game right.
3. Take your chances
We've seen how not taking our chances can hurt us in any fixture, but especially this one. Last year we easily could've gotten our first win against Atlanta if Ascues had put in two of the four guilt-edged chances he had, not to mention all the other ones we had shared around the squad. We must be ruthless in front of goal because no matter how bad Atlanta United's attack is, they always find a way to score against us.
Time: 3:30 PM EST
Where to Watch: Univision
Stadium: Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Team News (ORL): Dwyer (out), Aias (unavailable)
Team News (ATL): Martinez (out), Meza (out), Barco (questionable), Hyndman (questionable)
Predicted Lineup: (4-2-3-1) Gallese, Ruan, Carlos, Jansson, Moutinho, Mendez, Uri, Mueller, Pereyra, Nani, Dike
Score Prediction: 3-1 Win
If you liked what you read, you can follow me on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook. Please don't hesitate to let me know your thoughts on what I said. I really do enjoy having conversations with my fellow Orlando City fans about our team. That's why I started this blog/podcast in the first place.
'Til next time, this has been Gavin Rushnell and #VamosOrlando