Orlando City extends unbeaten streak with home draw against New York City

Orlando City SC and New York City FC drew 1-1 on Wednesday night at Exploria Stadium, with both teams looking back on the game as an opportunity lost to grab all three points.

The Lions grabbed an early goal from a deft Chris Mueller (pictured above) header in the 18th minute but had chances either side of that to have been more comfortable in the game. Andrés Perea and Daryl Dike both wasted good opportunities to open the scoring before Mueller laid in Ruan on the right side of the field. With a speedy twist and a turn the Brazilian brilliantly got behind a desperate Gudmundur Thórainsson lunging tackle to chip the ball back to Mueller who applied the finish for his eighth goal of the year.

Orlando had the ball in the net again shortly after as Júnior Urso tapped home a Dike cross but Dike was adjudged to have been in an offside position beforehand. That was enough for the visitors to wake up and they then started applying pressure on the Orlando defence. First drawing a smart save from Brian Rowe and then on the stroke of half time grabbing an equaliser as the home defence went to sleep allowing Keaton Parks (pictured below) to slot home after his initial shot had been saved by Rowe.

Half Time – Orlando City 1 New York City 1

The second half began in a similar fashion to the first as Orlando saw more of the ball but didn’t really do enough to create any significant chances. In the past, this was a game the home side may well have lost but this time they hung on despite more pressure from New York. The men in purple had man of the match, Brian Rowe (pictured above) to thank for that as he pulled off several fine saves including a superb one handed block from second half substitute Ismael Tajouri-Shradi.

After the game Orlando Head Coach Oscar Pareja said: “Well, 30 very good minutes for us in the first half. After that, New York started just getting the ball. We couldn’t get the ball back as we used to do and then they started creating some actions there, including the goal. It was a goal that we probably had overconfidence in, but I’m not going to blame the players because what I have preached in this team is to try to play the game. Not just kick and run, we try to play it and sometimes those things happen. We absorb the pain that we get in that goal, when New York scored. The second half was, it was probably a hope that we had during those 45 minutes of creating something and trying to hurt New York, but without consistency and without too many clean sequences, New York did some other actions there that could finish in a win for them. At the end, with the players, we’ll take the point. We know how hard it is in the league and how hard that rival is and today, we used to win at home but we’ll take that point and think about the next one.”

Lineups/Substitutions:

Orlando City SC – GK Brian Rowe; D Kamal Miller, Robin Jansson, Antonio Carlos, Ruan (Alex De John 90+3’); M Chris Mueller (Robinho 84’), Joey DeZart (David Loera 76’), Júnior Urso, Andrés Perea; F Nani ©, Daryl Dike (Jordan Bender 90+3’)

Substitutes Not Used: GK Mason Stajduhar; D Michael Halliday, Rodrigo Schlegel

New York City FC – GK Sean Johnson; D Gudmundur Thórainsson, Alexander Callens (Sebastien Ibeagha 90+2’), Maxime Chanot, Anton Tinnerholm; M Keaton Parks (Nicolás Acevedo 90+2’), Ronald Matarrita, Gary Mackay-Steven (Ismael Tajouri-Shradi 73’), Alexander Ring ©, Jesús Medina (Tony Rocha 90+3’); F Valentín Castellanos

Substitutes Not Used: GK Luis Barraza, Brad Stuver; D Joe Scally; M Juan Torres

Attendance: 2,745

More photos at FloridaLeisurePhotography.com

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