It’s Orlando City SC fans last chance to watch the Lions this 2017 season, as they’ll finish off this campaign on the road against the Philadelphia Union (10-14-9). The Lions have endured through what has mostly been a disappointing season, as they’ve made numerous additions in attempts to bolster the roster and make a serious push towards the postseason.

In addition to being the Lions (10-14-9) final regular season game, the contest will be the last for midfielder Ricardo Kaka, who announced a couple weeks ago that he would be stepping away from the club after the conclusion of the campaign. We take a look at a few things to watch for in Orlando City’s 2017 finale here this afternoon. The game is scheduled for a 4 p.m. kickoff at Talen Energy Stadium.

Kaka’s final game 

It will be another emotional roller coaster for the former Brazilian national team member, as Kaka makes his final appearance for Orlando City. Though Kaka’s three seasons have been somewhat underwhelming stats wise, his impact on the Lions and Major League Soccer are immeasurable.

Creating attacking opportunities

There’s been plenty of money invested into the midfield and forward positions for Orlando City and the Lions need some of those playmakers to step up in the finale. Forward Dom Dwyer and midfielders Will Johnson, Yoshimar Yuton are a few of those that have been placed with high expectations heading into next season.

End season on a high note

There’s no questioning that this 2017 season has been a disappointment, but one win to end it could be encouraging for the team. The Lions and Union both share identical records and jumping a spot ahead in the standings would be a plus.

Joe Bendik solid in goal

If anything else, one player who has been the model of consistency for Orlando City SC is goalkeeper Joe Bendik. The 28-year old has made 118 saves this season and that’s good enough for tops in MLS. Bendik has a bright future with the team.

What does the future hold? 

A question that’s been twirling around Orlando City camp is what does next season hold in store? Some changes will be made, but the club is stocked with plenty of talent so roster moves may be limited. Will coach Jason Kreis return to the bench?

About The Author

Andy Villamarzo has covered high school and youth sports for the Tampa Bay Times and The Tampa Tribune as a correspondent since 2008. He is a native of Holiday, FL, who graduated from Gulf High School and studied at St. Petersburg College. He has covered various prep, collegiate and professional athletes throughout his writing career, including Josh Johnson (Jacksonville Jaguars), Patrick Schuster (Arizona Diamondbacks) and currently writes for other publications like The Suncoast News, Friday Night Football Magazine and TopDrawerSoccer.com.

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