Can this be the week that Orlando City SC is able to break the long-standing losing streak of nine games? It’ll be a homecoming of sorts for Orlando City manager James O’Connor, who makes his home managerial debut against Toronto FC tonight at Orlando City Stadium.
The former Orlando City standout player had a rough go of it in his first ever match as a coach against Los Angeles last week in a 4-1 loss. Despite the loss, the Lions were able to get on the scoreboard finally, via a goal from midfielder Sacha Kljestan.
The Lions, though, are going to need a lot more offense if they look to upend Toronto at home tonight. We take a closer look at tonight’s matchup, which is slated for an 8 p.m. kickoff.
O’Connor home debut
Its been a long time coming for the former Orlando City star coming back to his old stomping grounds and there will be a lot of expectations from the home crowd to end a nine-game losing streak. It would be storybook-like if O’Connor can lead Orlando out with a win.
Sacha getting into the action
Last week’s goal against Los Angeles proved that Kljestan needed to get a few more touches to be effective within the framework of the system. If he can start doing it on a weekly basis remains to be seen.
Nine losses and counting …
No team has made a greater drop off in the Eastern Conference standings than Orlando City. It’s well documented about the Lions’ struggles and until the can get off the snide, the losing streak will continue to hover over their heads like a dark cloud.
Return of Yoshi Yotun is big
The Peru National has chipped in three goals and four assists this season and despite missing a handful of games for Orlando City, Yotun’s play tonight versus Toronto FC could be the difference maker.
The offense has been pretty lackluster, but the defense has started to level out the team’s overall play. If Joe Bendik and the defense can’t get it right, it could be a long rest of the season for Orlando.