After a 2-1 loss to Toronto FC on Wednesday night, Head Coach Jason Kreis is prepared to keep working and keep his men fighting-- not only to win the game on Sunday, but to earn as many points as possible in this final stretch of the season. While the results were not what the team wanted, Kreis noticed some positive things to take away from the match and noted some clear areas for improvement.
“It’s a night where I thought we did some really nice things,” Kreis said about the match against Toronto. “I’m still seeing improvements, positive signs that we’re headed in a good direction.”
Kreis went on to discuss the difficulty in taking on a team as good as Toronto. After their win last night, they are the number one team in the Eastern Conference and in the running for the Supporters’ Shield. “They’re a quality team,” Kreis said. “They took some chances.”
For Kreis, the larger focus is on developing the team’s tactical skill and fitness level. He admitted that there seemed to be some exhaustion on the field, and maybe fitness levels weren’t quite where he wanted them yet. “I know that takes time,” Kreis said. “It’s not something that I’m going to fix overnight.”
Aside from trying to maintain the player’s fitness, he also wants to make sure that enough players are involved in the attacking half of the field. He noted that the Toronto defenders fell back very quickly, and sometimes Orlando City only had two or three players in the box where Toronto had five or six. “We have some very creative players that make some very good decisions in the attacking half of the field,” Kreis said. “I feel like when we get in trouble it’s usually because we don’t have enough numbers forward.”
Still, Kreis believed that the chances for Cyle Larin in the match against Toronto were good, and on a different night, Kreis says he makes every one of those goals and Orlando City would have walked out winners. “I think for him its just continue to believe, work hard, and take chances.”
That, Kreis says, is the most important thing that this team needs right now--belief. “We’re at a moment right now with another difficult result at home where the players and the staff are faced with a decision,” Kreis said. “The decision is do you want to pack it in and think that we’re not good enough and feel sorry for ourselves, or do you choose to look at the positive side, which I think is a team that is improving and moving in a positive direction. And so I choose to believe.”
Kreis’ team will be tested again this Sunday against New York City FC. The match kicks off at 7:30pm at Camping World Stadium.