By The Numbers: The MLS is Back Final

By The Numbers: The MLS is Back Final

5 - Nani game-winner contributions

Orlando City captain Nani is the frontrunner for MLS is Back Tournament MVP for a reason. Outside of the NYCFC game, where Orlando City were out in front 2-0 in ten minutes, Nani has been involved in every decisive goal for the Lions at Disney. The Portuguese set the tone with his late winner against Inter Miami in the opener, then assisted Mauricio Pereyra’s equalizer against Philadelphia to win Group A. In the knockouts, Nani’s tasty flick set up Tesho Akindele’s winner against Montreal and his perfect corner kick found Joao Moutinho’s head for the late game-tying goal against LAFC (Nani also finished the penalty shootout to put Orlando through). Nani topped himself with his heroics against Minnesota United, scoring a first-half brace.


1 - First half goals allowed

Orlando City has played lockdown defense throughout the MLS is Back Tournament, but the Lions have been especially great in the first half. Orlando has allowed just one goal in the first 45 minutes, and it wasn’t exactly a cheap concession–Jesus Medina’s goal of the tournament contender from the NYCFC game. This could be especially key against the Portland Timbers, who have scored first in five of their six tournament games.


0 - Set piece goals allowed

Much was made of Minnesota United’s set piece prowess heading into the semifinal, and rightfully so–the Loons had scored five goals on restarts at MLS is Back. Despite 13 corners and numerous free kicks, though, Minnesota could not find the back of the net on set plays against Orlando City. In fact, no one has. The Lions have yet to concede a set piece goal in the entire tournament. Portland are also very good on restarts, with both goals in their semifinal victory over Philadelphia coming on set pieces.


.762 - It helps to have eight arms

Orlando City goalkeeper Pedro Gallese has lived up to his international billing at MLS is Back. “El Pulpo” has saved 16 of 21 shots that have come his way, including massive game-saving stops against NYCFC and LAFC. Gallese’s .762 save percentage in the tournament would have ranked second in MLS in 2019. The only goalkeeper with a better number? His opposite number in Tuesday night’s final–Portland’s Steve Clark saved at a .771 clip in his 24 starts last year.
 

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September 11, 2020: Major League Soccer has announced the 2020 regular season schedule through the end of September. From September 18-27, each MLS club will compete in three regular season matches. Additional 2020 MLS regular season matches will be announced pending further developments regarding travel protocols. Attendance at matches will be determined in accordance with applicable state and local guidelines.