Orlando City (3-3-6, 15 points) hit the road to take on NYCFC (4-4-5, 17 points) on Sunday at Yankee Stadium.
It’s the Lions second trip to the “House that Jeter Built” this season, the first ending in a 1-0 win for Orlando City courtesy of an early Cyle Larin goal.
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The Lions are limping into the match due to injuries (Darwin Ceren, Rafael Ramos, and Seb Hines), suspensions (Cristian Higuita and David Mateos), and International call-ups (Kaka). Although they are substantially shorthanded, Orlando City will want to get points out of the showdown, as it is their last game for almost three weeks due to the league-wide Copa America Centenario break.
Fans should expect to see some not so familiar faces today in defense as Conor Donovan and Devron Garcia have traveled with the first team after being called up from Orlando City B.
Hopefully Antonio Nocerino finds his footing and plays well to boost his confidence.
NYCFC will be motivated to show their home support that last week’s 7-0 drubbing at the hands of their bitter rival New York Red Bulls wasn’t indicative of another long painful season, so the Lion defense has to show up prepared to guard their goal with everything they have.
Joe Bendik earned his first clean sheet of the season the last time Orlando City visited the Bronx, a five save performance he would love to repeat.
The Lions will have to try their best to supply Cyle Larin up top, because the Canadian forward loves to play in New York metro area. In his four career games at Yankee Stadium or Red Bull Arena, Cyle has eight goals and two hat-tricks.