What looked a demanding two-game away streak on paper turned out that way but still boasting a 100% win record at Orlando City Stadium, Saturday’s home game with Sporting Kansas City provides a chance to bounce back.
After doing everything but equalise against Toronto FC in a decent second-half performance back on May 3rd, Orlando City SC were never in the game at Houston Dynamo.
Swept aside with ease by the BBVA Compass Stadium-based outfit, Jason Kreis will have revisited the basics at Sylvan Lake Park this week.
With Joe Bendik beaten at his near post for Alberth Elis’ opener then allowing Mauro Manotas to easily score a second that slipped past his body, it was a rare poor performance from our top class stopper.
It’s incredibly important for Orlando City SC not to panic after suffering back-to-back defeats while refocusing on what’s made them so hard to beat at Orlando City Stadium so far this season.
As for our latest visitors Sporting Kansas City, Peter Vermes’ side sat second in the Western Conference following Gameweek 9 but sit on the same number of points (18) as current leaders FC Dallas.
Clearly a capable team, it’s worth noting that Sporting Kansas City have won all of their home fixtures in MLS so far this season but aren’t so successful on the road. Another huge boost for Orlando City SC is that former Lions star Dom Dwyer is suspended for this match due to yellow card accumulation.
2015/16 head-to-head stats
The Lions’ first ever visit to Children’s Mercy Park in MLS, SKC rallied late to break Orlando City SC hearts on the day.
In a very even encounter, it looked as if City were on their way to a positive result on the road when Jimmy Medranda put the ball through his own net off a Lions corner in the 67th minute.
Sporting Kansas City 2 Orlando City SC 1 – Highlights – May 15, 2016 (Credit: Major League Soccer)
Orlando City SC have only played Sporting Kansas City twice in Major League Soccer so far given the fact Peter Vermes’ side are a Western Conference outfit.
This particular game series is currently tied at one victory each for either side.
Orlando City SC 3 Sporting Kansas City 1 – Highlights – September 13, 2016 (Credit: Sporting Kansas City)
An interesting observation in Orlando City SC versus Sporting Kansas City fixtures is the fact that the majority of goals are scored AFTER the hour mark.
In September 2015’s 3-1 City win and May 2016’s 2-1 defeat, FIVE of the SEVEN goals scored in those games came after the 60th minute.
Orlando City SC have been used to narrowly getting past their opposition at home so far this season and taking this game series into account, both sides appear very evenly matched.
Orlando City SC form
As we’re all firmly aware, Orlando City SC have been perfect at our new Orlando City Stadium home so far this season.
Winning all FIVE home games so far this season, add in the 4-2 win over D.C. United in our Camping World Stadium farewell and City have won their last SIX in Central Florida.
Given the fact we’ve lost THREE of our FOUR away games so far this season, keeping our fantastic home record going will prove vital as we try and hunt down a spot in the 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs.
Sporting Kansas City form
When Sporting Kansas City hit the road, what we get is low scoring encounters as has proved the case in MLS so far this season.
SKC have only scored ONCE away from home this season – a 0-1 win at Portland Timbers in April.
Elsewhere, Sporting KC drew their first two away games 0-0 this term while then losing 1-0 at FC Dallas ahead of Adrian Heath‘s Minnesota United beating them 2-0 last time out.
The good news for Orlando City SC is that Sporting Kansas City are particularly poor when hitting the road.
Failing to score in SIX of their last SEVEN away fixtures in Major League Soccer, this game comes on the back of Peter Vermes’ side making the 437 mile trip to Minneapolis to take on Minnesota United.
Now embarking on a 1,238 mile trip to Central Florida, we hope that Orlando City SC can take advantage of possible fatigue in the Sporting Kansas City squad.
When you don’t score many on the road, you naturally won’t pick up too many points and that’s been the case for Sporting Kansas City.
Dig deeper into the stats and rather alarmingly for Peter Vermes’ side, SKC have failed to win NINETEEN of their last TWENTY ONE away fixtures in Major League Soccer.
With this being the case, plus Dom Dwyer’s suspension Orlando City SC should be going for all three points – as is always expected at home – this weekend.