Orlando Pounced Early
The goals came quick and often for Orlando behind the back of Chris Mueller, who continues his spectacular start to the tournament.
The first came four minutes in when Joao Moutinho whipped in a set for Mueller to finish in front of a high NYCFC line. Mueller would double the advantage just six minutes later on a layoff from striker Dom Dwyer. The early Orlando surge was the quickest the lions had scored two goals since they began MLS.
— Last Word on Soccer (@LastWordSC) July 15, 2020
NYCFC surge not enough
Following a hydration break in the 30th minute, City showed rejuvenated energy. This was highlighted by a fantastic strike by Jesus Medina to halve the Orlando lead in the 38th minute. An uptempo City was dominant in the first half following the goal but was unable to equalize.
A similar fate followed the pigeons in the second half. NYCFC had consistent chances, but weren’t unable to find the back of the net. This was evident in the 78th minute when NYCFC winger Tati Castellanos had a clear eye at goal. However, an in-form Pedro Gallese halted Tati’s chance. Gallese’s five saves were crucial in keeping City out of the net in the 2nd half.
Orlando Finishes it off
The icing on the cake was put on in the 81st minute when super-sub Tesho Akindele netted the dagger following a rebounded shot from Benji Michel. The goal highlighted City’s struggle to contain Nani throughout the match, who set up the eventual third goal.
The victory gives Orlando six points from two matches, virtually guaranteeing them a spot in the knockout stages. With NYCFC on 0 points two matches in, it leaves a nearly impossible route to the next round.