The Lions’ first ever trip to the Quakes’ Avaya Stadium home given 2015’s head-to-head (1-1) took place at Levi’s Stadium, Orlando City SC will be looking for a much better road performance this time around.
Suffering back-to-back away defeats against Toronto FC (2-1) and Houston Dynamo (4-0) recently, Orlando City SC have struggled to pick points up on the road, not only this season but since entering Major League Soccer.
Always a tough proposition, given the vast distances travelled across North America and subsequent fatigue, the Lions need to find a formula to pick up road points with the 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs our sole aim.
Only winning THREE away games all last season, Jason Kreis will be fully aware that Orlando City SC appear a completely different team away from home so he will be looking to work on our mentality and shape on the road.
The fourth furthest away game in all of MLS for Orlando City SC, grabbing at least a point at San Jose Earthquakes will be tough considering Dominic Kinnear’s Quakes are enjoying a solid season so far.
Currently sitting fifth in the Western Conference with 15 points after 11 games played, Quakes are undefeated at Avaya Stadium so far this season so this midweek fixture represents a huge challenge for Orlando City SC.
2015/16 head-to-head stats
The last time San Jose Earthquakes and Orlando City SC met, the fixture was an incredibly sombre occasion given it was the Lions’ first home fixture taking place after the tragic Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting.
On the night, the 2-2 draw was excellently observed by everybody at Camping World Stadium with referee Robert Sibiga stopping the game in the 49th minute to honour the nightclub victims.
Camping World Stadium was awash with red, orange, yellow, green, blue and of course purple in line with the #OrlandoUnited campaign, and the Lions were oh so close to grabbing all three points in the game.
However, there were two more goals to come, firstly a 90th minute pile-driver by Julio Baptista, looking like a fitting way to toast such a poignant occasion, then a last gasp Shea Salinas equaliser for 2-2 – effectively the last kick of the game.
Orlando City SC 2 San Jose Earthquakes 2 – Highlights – June 18, 2016 (Credit: San Jose Earthquakes)
Orlando City SC have only faced San Jose Earthquakes TWICE in Major League Soccer so far, given the fact Dominic Kinnear’s side are a Western Conference franchise.
With nothing to split the sides in both fixtures contested so far, you get the feeling that Orlando City SC would snap your hands off for a draw in California this time around.
The last time we visited Northern California in May 2015, a 1-1 draw took place at Levi’s Stadium rather than San Jose Earthquakes’ regular Avaya Stadium home due to an agreement the Quakes had in place to schedule two of their 2015 regular season games at the bigger 68,500 capacity venue.
As it turned out, Orlando City SC did well to grab this road point after Brek Shea was sent off for a studs up challenge on Sanna Nyassi in the 51st minute.
Then defying expectations to go 0-1 up with 10 men, through a Kaká penalty, unfortunately it was only four minutes later in which Quakes legend Chris Wondolowski equalised.
San Jose Earthquakes 1 Orlando City SC 1 – Highlights – May 24, 2015 (Credit: San Jose Earthquakes)
San Jose Earthquakes form
An unbeaten home run stretching back into last season, San Jose Earthquakes are UNDEFEATED in their last SEVEN home fixtures in MLS.
Winning THREE and drawing TWO of their FIVE home games played so far this season, Dominic Kinnear’s side are used to having things their own way at Avaya Stadium so this will prove a tough assignment for Orlando City SC.
Currently on 121 career goals for San Jose Earthquakes in Major League Soccer, there’s no doubting that Chris Wondolowski is the biggest danger man for the home side with four goals to his name so far this season.
We’ve already mentioned that San Jose Earthquakes have drawn TWO of their home fixtures played so far this season and in both of those games, the result ended 1-1.
Also significant was the fact that on both occasions, Quakes struck stoppage time equalisers to peg back their opposition.
Against Seattle Sounders on April 8th, Chris Wondolowski scored a 90th minute equaliser to cancel out Nicolás Lodeiro’s opener while on April 14th against FC Dallas, Albanian international Jahmir Hyka scored a 94th minute leveller to cancel out Kellyn Acosta’s strike.
Although Quakes are undefeated in their last SEVEN home fixtures in MLS, Dominic Kinnear’s side head into this one in patchy form.
Thrashed 3-0 at Colorado Rapids last weekend, this was San Jose Earthquakes’ THIRD loss in FIVE games with Houston Dynamo and Adrian Heath‘s Minnesota United also getting the better of Quakes lately.
Still enjoying a solid season with Quakes in fifth place in the Western Conference, hopefully Orlando City SC can catch the Californian side out on Wednesday.
Orlando City SC form
For neutrals looking for plenty of goals, Orlando City SC road games have produced just that recently with OVER 2.5 GOALS scored in our last THREE away fixtures.
Way too many for the Lions’ liking in our 4-0 humbling at Houston Dynamo recently, this followed a 2-1 loss at Toronto FC and 1-2 victory at New York City FC.
Our back line has been fairly stingy at Orlando City Stadium so far this season so you can imagine that recent training work at Sylvan Lake Park would’ve involved improving defensive discipline away from home.
As we’re all too unfortunately aware, Orlando City SC appear a completely different side away from home in MLS.
Outside inflicting a 1-2 defeat on 2015 expansion rivals New York City FC on April 23rd, the Lions have been defeated in all THREE of their other away games so far this term.
Going down 2-0 at Columbus Crew, 2-1 at Toronto FC and most recently 4-0 at Houston Dynamo, there is big room for improvement at San Jose Earthquakes on Wednesday evening.
Houston Dynamo 4 Orlando City SC 0 – Highlights – May 6, 2017 (Credit: Nación Púrpura)