Orlando City Lose 1-0 to English Premier League Stoke City

Filed under: Orlando City Soccer,Orlando Events |

In front of 10,441 fans, Orlando City Soccer Club fell 1-0 in an international friendly against English Premier League side Stoke City at the Florida Citrus Bowl last night. A goal in stoppage time at the end of the first half was the only difference between the two sides and despite the loss, Orlando City was praised for the quality of their play and for the size of crowd the game attracted.


“This club has all the right things to be in the MLS,” said Stoke City Manager Tony Pulis (pictured above). “A great crowd came out tonight, and Orlando City played well. This is definitely the place to be.”

Under the gaze of former MLS Houston Dynamo and new Stoke signing Geoff Cameron (pictured above), Stoke’s first chance came in the 11th minute when a free kick from Glenn Whelan was saved by diving Orlando City Goalkeeper Miguel Gallardo to keep the scoreline level.

Orlando, however, were determined not to be outplayed by a so called better team and really had the better chances to score during the game as both Mechack and Molino went close early on. Unfortunately, as so often happens in soccer, they just couldn’t find that one moment of quality when most needed and ultimately they came to rue the missed chances as Stoke took the lead right on the stroke of half time.

In the one true moment of quality during the whole game, a Marc Wilson cross was nodded down by England striker Peter Crouch and Jon Walters neatly chested the ball down before smashing an angled volley past the helpless Miguel Gallardo from 12 yards to give the Potters a 1-0 lead. It was a bitter blow to the home team.

The second half then got off to a rocky start for Stoke as Whelan deliberately elbowed Orlando’s Charlie Campbell in the 59th and got his marching orders for his second yellow card. It was a reckless and needless challenge leaving the Potters down a man for the final 30 minutes.


Orlando then mounted a sustained attack in a quest for an equaliser on the Stoke goal and several half chances went begging. Stoke were solid in defense and no matter what Orlando did, they just couldn’t find a way past the resolute Stoke rearguard who hung on for a slim 1-0 win.

At the end of the game Orlando Coach Adrian Heath said: “I’m delighted with the team. We played well and after playing so many games in a short time, we gave Stoke a good workout.”

Orlando City now returns to USL PRO regular season play on Wednesday, August 1, at the Harrisburg City Islanders. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. EST. Orlando has already clinched the regular season title and home field advantage throughout the playoffs, so every game from here on out is a chance to give some fringe players a run out.  The Lions then return to the Citrus Bowl for their final match of the regular season on August 17.

More photos from the game are at FloridaLeisurePhotography.com and MarkSimsPhotography

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