Staying on the road to face New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena, it’s not getting any easier for the Lions to haul themselves back into an MLS Cup qualification spot.
Winless in our last FOUR Major League Soccer fixtures and having only won TWO league games since May, Jason Kreis and his side are under huge pressure to deliver.
No matter which way you look at it, our form simply hasn’t been good enough. Boasting a very capable first eleven on paper and backed by incredible support of course, there should be no excuses.
Defensive lapses and a rare lack of potency in front of goal have cost us in recent months.
Surrendering a 0-1 lead at Montreal Impact in an eventual 2-1 loss last time out, Orlando City SC cannot afford to feel sorry for themselves.
Following this defeat, Jason Kreis told the media: “I’m deeply disappointed that we, as coaches, keep saying the same things, but the message doesn’t seem to be getting across.”
Orlando City SC now to dig deeper than ever before for a game changing result that can instill new belief that we can make the 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs.
As far as away venues go, Red Bull Arena has long been a tough place to travel to and right now, New York Red Bulls are hot.
Despite narrowly losing 3-2 to cross-river rivals New York City FC last time out, Jesse Marsch’s side had won FOUR consecutive MLS fixtures before that.
In recent meetings between New York Red Bulls and Orlando City SC, we’ve seen all three result forms in the last THREE head-to-heads.
2015/17 head-to-head stats
Narrowly defeating Jesse Marsch’s side 1-0 thanks to Servando Carrasco‘s first goal for the club, everything we touched seemed to turn to gold during the start of the campaign.
Part of a hugely successful streak with one loss and seven wins on the board from March to May, these victories are sadly a distant memory right now.
Orlando City SC 1 New York Red Bulls 0 – Highlights – April 9, 2017 (Credit: Major League Soccer)
Facing each other SIX times in Major League Soccer so far, New York Red Bulls have a slight advantage over Orlando City SC in this game series.
Winning THREE head-to-heads compared to Orlando City SC‘s TWO, the Lions’ standout victory over the Harrison-based side came in September 2015.
Defeating Jesse Marsch’s side 2-5 at Red Bull Arena, this victory was part of Orlando City SC‘s incredible end to 2015 where we won FIVE of our last SIX regular season fixtures.
Unfortunately, we timed our 2015 MLS Cup Playoffs charge too late however with the Lions finishing five points behind sixth-placed Toronto FC.
Speaking of that superb 2-5 victory over New York Red Bulls in September 2015, the game will live long in the memory for Cyle Larin.
Our Canadian international talisman recently became the youngest player in MLS history to score 40 league goals and back in that 2-5 win, Cyle Larin grabbed a hat-trick.
Registering his hat-trick in only 61 minutes, Larin’s ruthlessness completely demoralised the home side with Red Bulls having twice tired to make a tight game of it through Dax McCarty and Lloyd Sam strikes.
New York Red Bulls form
If you’ve been watching the New York Red Bulls recently, you certainly won’t have been bored!
After all, there have been OVER 2.5 GOALS scored in their last FIVE Major League Soccer fixtures.
Red Bulls came up against an inspired hat-trick performance from David Villa last time out with New York City FC narrowly prevailing 3-2 in the New York derby.
Before that, Red Bulls were involved in a 2-3 win at New England Revolution, a 5-1 victory over San Jose Earthquakes, a 0-3 win at Minnesota United and a 4-0 victory over Montreal Impact.
It’s safe to say that Orlando City SC‘s defence will have to be on red alert on Saturday with our defensive game suffering in recent months.
New York City FC 3 New York Red Bulls 2 – Highlights – August 6, 2017 (Credit: Major League Soccer)
As you would’ve read above, New York Red Bulls have been incredibly potent in front of goal recently.
Jesse Marsch’s side have now scored AT LEAST TWO GOALS in their last FIVE MLS fixtures.
On paper, this game looks for the world like a home banker for a free-scoring New York Red Bulls side but Orlando City SC must try their utmost to turn the form book on its head.
There is absolutely no leeway for continued mistakes and defensive lapses right now with Orlando City SC TWO points beneath the red line following our 2-1 defeat at Montreal Impact.
New York Red Bulls’ all-time leading goalscorer in Major League Soccer with 82 goals, Bradley Wright-Phillips has long been Red Bulls’ biggest threat.
Currently enjoying a hot vein of form, BWP has scored FIVE goals in his last FIVE appearances for the New Jersey side.
Enjoying a rare frustrating day in front of goal against Joe Bendik and our Orlando City SC defence back in April, we must pull out all the stops to thwart a prolific Bradley Wright-Phillips once more.
Orlando City SC form
Probably the most alarming stat we’ve posted all season long, Orlando City SC now only have TWO victories from their last SIXTEEN MLS fixtures.
Losing 2-1 at Montreal Impact last time out, Orlando City SC are a team lacking confidence right now.
A campaign that is in danger of slipping away, Orlando City SC have a short history of slumping mid-season and we must arrest this form as soon as possible.
Never really recovering our confidence since a slender 2-1 loss at Toronto FC back on May 3rd, the coaching staff, players and supporters must all pull together right now to haul ourselves back above the red line.
Montreal Impact 2 Orlando City SC 1 – Highlights – August 5, 2017 (Credit: Impact de Montréal)