Orlando City loses 2-0 to Montreal Impact


Orlando City SC (5-6-5, 20 points) suffered a 2-0 defeat to the Montreal Impact at Saputo Stadium on Saturday night, snapping the Lions’ six game unbeaten run.

Orlando City came into the match after playing 120 minutes and 10 rounds of penalty kicks against the Charleston Battery four days ago, aiming to continue its rise in the Eastern Conference table.

The Lions had a strong start to the match as rookie striker Cyle Larin found himself on the end of several close chances. However, despite Orlando’s usual strong possession and near chances, Montreal produced the game’s first goal when Danny Toia scored a looping header over Tally Hall in the 35th minute.

Head Coach Adrian Heath was forced to make his first of three substitutions during halftime, bringing on experienced defender Seb Hines for an injured Aurelien Collin. As the half progressed, the coach also introduced Carlos Rivas and Pedro Ribeiro to provide the Lions with additional attacking options.

Both Rivas and Ribeiro provided a spark for City, threatening Impact goalkeeper Evan Bush with strong chances. However, as the Lions made a concerted effort to push for an equalizer, the Impact took advantage of second-half substitute Dominic Oduro’s pace on the counter-attack, scoring in the final minute of the game.

Orlando City Soccer 4 LA Galaxy 0, Orlando Citrus Bowl, Orlando, Florida - 17th May 2015 (Photographer: Nigel G Worrall)

“I actually thought we moved the ball relatively well in the first half, and I thought there was something in the game for us,” said head coach Adrian Heath. “Cyle could’ve conceivably had four. Pedro’s come on and had a couple. But we carried too many players today. Too many people let us down. There was a lack of energy from too many of our players. We know we’ve got one or two that are hurting but in general, I’m disappointed with our effort. That’s not us. We’re better than that.”

First Half:

3’ The first chance for Orlando came early on when Rafael Ramos got in behind on the right side and floated a precise ball into the box for Larin, whose header went wide of the target after colliding with the goalkeeper.

6’ Larin had another dangerous opportunity moments later when Brek Shea drove a ball to the near-post for the Canadian, who hit it first time, but his effort went high of the target.

17’ Montreal began showing signs of life with Piatti and McInerney creating half-chances but the City backline remained in tact.

30’ Kaka skipped past his defender in a one-on-one situation on the left side of the box, before driving it across toward Lewis Neal. The English midfielder attempted to back heel Kaka’s cross but was unable to connect with the ball.

32’ With less than 15 minutes remaining in the half, Tally Hall was called upon when Ignacio Piatti created the home side’s best chance in the first 45, hitting a low and powerful effort on target. Piatti maneuvered his strike through traffic, making it difficult for Hall to see the ball, but the veteran did well to get low and push it wide.

35’  Montreal would eventually find the back of the net when Danny Toia produced a superb finish, nodding home a glancing header from Marco Donadel’s corner. Toia’s header at the near-post was whipped to the back post, leaving Hall with little chance at a save.

40’ Orlando picked up their intensity in the final third after the Impact’s goal and, as a result, Cristian Higuita came close to leveling the scoreline, hitting a strong shot from the edge of the box just over the crossbar.

45 (+1) At the end of the first half, the Lions went into the locker room down 1-0, despite controlling possession 53-47.

Second Half:

46’ Shortly after the start of the second half, Heath brought on Seb Hines for Aurelien Collin who seemed to suffer a hamstring injury.

50’ Andres Romero broke in behind on a breakaway early in the second half, but Boden did well to recover and make a goal-saving challenge.

54’ Larin responded with another chance after turning inside the box, but his left-footed shot struggled to put Impact goalkeeper Evan Bush under pressure.

60’ Heath brought on pacy winger Carlos Rivas for Lewis Neal, who played 120 minutes in the team’s win over the Charleston Battery in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Wednesday.

64’ Rivas nearly put his stamp on the game when his attempt from 30 yards away created a nervous moment for Bush.

68’ Shortly after coming on, Oduro set Piatti up from a clear chance but the playmaker pulled it wide.

80’ As the game approached a close, Orlando continued pushing for an equalizer, continuously, whipping balls into the box to put Montreal under pressure.

87’ Orlando’s second shot on target came with three minutes remaining when Ribeiro brought the ball down in traffic and fired an effort from inside the box. Bush was positioned well though and was able to make the save.

90’ The referee added four minutes of stoppage time, providing City with more time to equalize.

90 (+4) With Orlando pushing to equalize the game, Montreal took advantage on a counter-attack in the final minute of the game, sending Oduro in behind. The striker’s initial pass in the box was deflected by Seb, but Oduro as lucky to have the ball bounce back to him and was able to sneak it past Hall.
Team                    1    2   Final
Orlando City  SC        0    0    0
Montreal Impact         1    1    2

Scoring Summary:

MTL: Danny Toia (Marco Donadel) 35’

MTL: Dominic Oduro (Unassisted) 94’
Misconduct Summary:

ORL: Cristian Higuita (Yellow Card) 46’

MTL: Evan Bush (Yellow Card) 89’
Orlando City SC – GK Tally Hall, D Rafael Ramos, Aurelien Collin (Seb Hines 58’), Sean St. Ledger, Luke Boden, M Darwin Ceren, Cristian Higuita (Pedro Ribeiro 77’), Lewis Neal (Carlos Rivas 60’), Brek Shea, Kaka, Cyle Larin

Montreal Impact  – GK Evan Bush, D Ambroise Oyongo, Bakary Soumare, Laurent Ciman, Danny Toia, M Andres Romero, Marco Donadel (Patrice Bernier 72’), Ignacio Piatti (Calum Mallace 80’), Nigel Reo-Coker, Maxim Tissot, F Jack McInerney (Dominic Oduro 67’)

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