It was a very awful evening on Monday vs DC United. Nobody looked in sync, the defense was lazy, the attack was poor, and the midfield was lively. Orlando let the worst team in the league walk into Exploria and dominate. It’s safe to say Orlando can no longer underestimate any opponent at all. The Lions have been out of sorts recently in the regular season and they don’t have much to blame but themselves. They welcome an inner state rival on Saturday night to try to bounce back, as Inter Miami CF joins the party.
July is looking like a difficult month ahead for Orlando, with a lot of difficult matchups in a crucial point in the season. These upcoming matches will determine where Orlando will fall. It’s time to stop letting teams roll over you and get back to winning ways.
Orlando City Stats 7-7-4, Top Goal Scorer: Kara, Top Assister: Pereyra, LWLWD Inter Miami CF Stats 6-7-4, Top Goal Scorer: Campana, Top Assister: Duke/Lassiter, DWLWW
Three Things 1. Find our Defensive Identity At the start of the season, Orlando was a very solid defensive team, if not the best in the Eastern Conference. Over time, the focus on that side of the ball has started to slip. There have been a lot of factors in this. One, there have been a ridiculous amount of yellow cards causing suspensions. Two, Carlos was our best defender and he missed a solid amount of time due to injury. Moutinho as well. Carlos and Moutinho will be definite starters if they are healthy, and the other two filling out the back line will most likely be Ruan and Jansson. This back line should not be leaking goals like we have been recently. We don’t score too many, but if we can keep the overall game low scoring, we have a chance.
2. Pereyra’s Shoes Need Filling Pereyra was taken off in the match vs DC United due to injury. Regardless of stats or anything, it’s been pretty clear Pereyra is the main creative force in Orlando’s attack. He leads the team in assists and is always the one playing the critical pass between lines and creating scoring opportunities for his teammates. That being said, someone is going to need to take that role if he is to be sidelined on Saturday night. We saw what Torres can do with a bit of confidence - as he came off the bench vs DC and provided a goal and an assist. He can play all across the front 3, and maybe we station him more as a 10 vs Inter. Pato has to step up and that’s just facts. He has been extremely poor as of late with sloppy feet and 0 production. Lastly, even though he’s a bit clumsy, Kara has found ways to get it in the back of the net. These are my 3 key attackers that need to step up in order for Orlando to win.
With Pereyra pictured in training, we can only hope he will be available against Miami. We will need him.
3. Pareja’s Seat is Getting Hotter I mentioned last week I believe that I don’t think Pareja is to blame for this recent slump in form. He’s had a lot to deal with in terms of injuries and yellow card suspensions. In my opinion, he’s put the right guys on the field and they have not been producing up to Orlando City standards. However, he is the manager at the end of the day. He needs to find a way to spark this team back to life. The talent is there, but the chemistry and will to win is not there every single second like it should be. If Pereyra is out, there may need to be a tactical change that suits the players out there. End of the day, Orlando can not lose this game. If we suffer two back to back losses at Exploria, we may need to start a dialogue.
A Look at Inter Miami CF ~ Campana main source of offense and guy that needs the most attention, leads the team in 8 goals ~ 26th in goals scored - like Orlando, they struggle to create chances ~ Gregore and Lowe good players in the midfield and defense ~ A pretty even matchup to say the least, could be a dogfight
1-1 draw. I think Torres gets back on the scoresheet too, as he looks to
have a promising July campaign. Inter has some weapons in their team,
and Orlando’s offense has been letting me down game after game. They
can’t lose this though. And I’m praying that they don’t. Vamos!