Lions Looking for Season Sweep of NYCFC

NYC Preview

ORLANDO, Fla. (May 19, 2017) - Following Wednesday’s draw in San Jose, Orlando City SC (6-3-2, 20 points) will look to sweep the season series when it hosts New York City FC (5-4-2, 17 points) on Sunday, May 21. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET at Orlando City Stadium.

The match will be nationally televised on FS1 and will be transmitted locally on Real Radio 104.1 and La Nueva 990 AM.

“It’s been four games without a win and we’re very hungry for the next one. I think that’s one of the nice things about getting out to a really good start, getting those wins under your belt, is that you get a real taste for it. When you go through games without [wins] you start to feel really hungry for it,” Lions Head Coach Jason Kreis said. “[NYCFC] is a team we’re obviously very familiar with now having played against them for the third time. We have a very good understanding of what they’re about and what they’re trying to do and they have a very good understanding of us. At the end of the day it’s going to come down to who wants it more.”

This is the third meeting of the season between the 2015 expansion rivals. Orlando City picked up its first Opening Day victory with a 1-0 clean sheet on March 5. Cyle Larin scored the first goal in the stadium’s history and Joe Bendik made six saves, including his Save of the Week-winning stop on Jack Harrison. Then on April 23, Larin scored his eighth and ninth goals in seven career games against NYCFC to pick up City’s second win in its last three games at Yankee Stadium.

Orlando City leads the all-time series 5-1-2, splitting it 1-1-1 in 2015 before taking seven of nine possible points in 2016. A win on Sunday would give Orlando City its first three-game season series sweep in Major League Soccer (MLS).

The Lions return to Orlando City Stadium, where they are unbeaten with a 5-0-1 record, following a 1-1 draw at San Jose. The match was scoreless for over an hour before Kreis inserted Kaká and Carlos Rivas and the move quickly paid off. Kaká connected with left back PC, who made his MLS debut along with defender Léo Pereira, to find Rivas for the opening goal. Chris Wondolowski scored three minutes later as City picked up its second draw of the season.  

Rivas’ goal was his second of the season and he is fourth in MLS with five assists. Larin is in a three-way tie for third in the league with seven goals. Kaká has three goals and one assist in just 255 minutes this season.

New York City is coming off a 2-1 loss to Real Salt Lake. Sean Okoli scored his first career goal in the fourth minute but Albert Rusnak equalized before assisting on Aaron Maund’s game-winner in the 51st minute.

David Villa leads the Pigeons with six goals and four assists while Harrison has four goals. University of Central Florida product Sean Johnson has played every minute in goal for NYCFC, posting two clean sheets in nine games.