QUEENS, N.Y. (Sept. 20, 2023) – Orlando City SC (14-7-8, 50 points) dropped a 2-0 decision to New York City FC (7-10-13, 30 points) at Citi Field on Wednesday night, however, D.C. United drew with Atlanta United FC, meaning the Lions have officially clinched a spot in the Audi 2023 MLS Playoffs. It is the fourth-consecutive season that City will appear in postseason play, all coming under the helm of head coach Oscar Pareja.
The Lions will look ahead to Sunday, Sept. 24, as they are set to welcome intrastate rival Inter Miami CF to Exploria Stadium. The matchup will be the third between the two sides this season across all competitions, with each team earning a win. The match is set to kickoff at 7:30 p.m. ET and can be seen on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV and nationally on FS1.
37’ Mounsef Bakrar – NYC 1, ORL 0
The hosts took the lead shortly before halftime after a penalty kick was awarded to Santiago Rodríguez. Orlando City goalkeeper Pedro Gallese saved the initial attempt by Rodríguez, but the follow-up header by Mounsef Bakrar found its way to the back of the net.
68’ Talles Magno (Andres Jasson, Santiago Rodríguez) – NYC 2, ORL 0
NYCFC added another in the second half when Santiago Rodríguez played a ball down the wing for Andres Jasson. Jasson took some stepovers before hitting a cross into the middle of the box where Talles Magno was waiting. Magno hit a looping header into the top corner of the net to make it 2-0.
Head Coach Oscar Pareja:
“It is mixed feelings right now. Obviously in this long run as we are about to finish the season with five games still to play, to clinch now is a tremendous achievement from our team and our Club and our fans. We would have loved to celebrate that with a victory today and a better result and a better performance, but we couldn't. We have no excuses. We are responsible for the good and the things we did not do good. The boys have a lot of respect for days like these on which we do not perform the best. We played against a good team. I think they had the best chances as we only had a few. We were not sharp in that end, but we were not sharp in our defensive side either. We will take the best out of this game and we will move on. We have games in front of us that can put us in a better position towards the playoffs. A lot of things to digest today. I still want to congratulate this group and the Club and our fans to clinch.”
- The Lions have clinched a postseason berth for the fourth-consecutive season.
- Gastón González made his return to the pitch, coming on as a substitute in the 80th minute. The last match he appeared in was back on June 21, in a match against the Philadelphia Union.
- Head Coach Oscar Pareja made two changes to his starting lineup since his side’s last match against the Columbus Crew with Wilder Cartagena and Facundo Torres both getting the nod.
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