Orlando City v Antigua Barracuda Tonight

Filed under: Florida News,Just For Fun,Sport |

Orlando City has not lost a match in over two months, but the Lions face one of their toughest tests of the season tonight when Antigua Barracuda FC visits Orlando for the first time. Kickoff is set for 7:30 pm at the Citrus Bowl.

Since the season opener on April 2nd, Orlando City has not lost a match and the current 11 match unbeaten streak sees Orlando City at the top of the USL PRO’s American Division. Tonight’s opponents lie in third place, eight points behind the Lions in the division having played the same number of games. An Orlando win would go a long way to cementing City’s place both in the playoff race and at the top of the American Division.

Tonight’s match is the first of three matches between the Lions and Barracudas this month. A win in this match is key for Orlando City as the next two matches will come at the beginning of a long stretch of games for the Lions when they will play a minimum of seven games in three weeks.

“How we play in this match will go a long way in determining what we need to do later in the season,” said Head Coach Adrian Heath. “We’ll learn a lot about what types of players we need against Antigua. That’ll be a big help in determining how we handle that long stretch at the end of the month.”

Antigua comes in to the match fresh off a two match home series against the Rochester Rhinos. The Barracudas went 0-1-1 in the matches, losing 2-1 on June 3rd before drawing 2-2 on June 5th. After starting the season in good form, the Barracudas have cooled significantly. They have not won since the reorganization of the USL PRO divisions, going 0-3-1 in four matches including the two game series against the Rhinos.

Despite their recent results, Antigua brings a potent attack to the Citrus Bowl Friday night. The Barracudas get goals from all over the field, but their primary weapons are Peter Byers and Stefan Smith. Both have scored four goals this season to lead their team. Orlando City’s league leading defense will have their hands full with the tandem and Demar Stewart, Rob Valentino, and Miguel Gallardo will have to be at the top of their game to maintain the Lions league-leading goals allowed total (eight goals in 12 games).

Orlando City is celebrating Caribbean Night in honor of Antigua’s first visit to the City Beautiful. For tickets and information, visit www.orlandocitysoccer.com or call 407-536-5368.

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