Orlando City B

 What to watch as Orlando City B head to Ohio to take on Columbus Crew 2


Orlando City B (3-2-3, 13 points) at Columbus Crew 2 (3-3-2, 12 points)

When: Wednesday, May 15, 12:00 p.m. ET

Where: Lower.com Field, Columbus, OH


Welcome to the Show

Rookie Yutaro Tsukada picked up his first professional brace last Wednesday against New York Red Bulls II and pulled into a tie for the team lead with three goals so far on the season. The No. 25 overall selection in the 2024 MLS SuperDraft has also assisted on three goals for the Lions, also most on OCB this year. Following his performance for Orlando City B earlier in the week, Tsukada signed a short-term agreement with Orlando City and was available for selection in the First Team’s 3-1 win at Philadelphia Union over the weekend.

Marathon Man

Captain Imanol Almaguer has played all 720 minutes during the Lions’ first eight games of the 2024 MLS NEXT Pro campaign. The midfielder is one of only 10 MLS NEXT Pro players who have played every minute of their respective clubs’ first eight matches of the 2024 season. Fellow midfielder Jhon Solís is the next closest player on OCB in terms of minutes at 685 to date, followed by forward Yutaro Tsukada, with the trio being the only players to feature in all eight of OCB’s matches this season.

None Shall Pass

Despite not getting the start last week against New York Red Bulls II, goalkeeper Javier Otero is fifth in MLS NEXT Pro with 26 goalkeeper saves. He is the only player with five appearances or fewer to have over 20 saves on the season. Otero has also only allowed six goals to be scored, tied for the fewest amongst goalkeepers with at least five appearances. Featuring against Red Bulls II, fellow goalkeeper Carlos Mercado made four saves to help the Lions win 3-1 at home.

Not So Friendly Environment

The last time the Lions faced off with Crew 2 in Central Ohio was OCB’s first-ever appearance in the MLS NEXT Pro Playoffs. The Lions fell 2-1 after Crew 2 converted a penalty kick in second-half stoppage time to advance. Prior to that meeting, the Lions were able to pick up their first win against the 2022 MLS NEXT Pro champions in a 4-1 win at Osceola County Stadium, a match in which Jack Lynn, Shak Mohammed, Wilfredo Rivera and Jhon Solís all found the back of the net.