After absorbing their first road defeat of the season, Orlando City FC will try to get back on track when they visit Toronto FC on Saturday.
Orlando City (5-4-2, 17 points) lost for the first time in five tries as the visitor last week, falling 4-1 to CF Montreal. The club remains a solid 2-1-2 on the road this season.
The Lions have alternated wins and losses in their past four MLS games and past five matches across all competitions, with U.S. Open Cup play thrown into the mix. Orlando City followed up the loss to Montreal with a 2-1 victory against the Philadelphia Union on Tuesday in U.S. Open Cup play.
The club has not lost consecutive MLS games since a four-game slide from Sept. 10-25 of last season and has followed up each of its three losses before last weekend with a victory. Facundo Torres has two goals and four assists for a balanced Orlando City attack.
“This team has surprised me a lot,” Orlando City coach Oscar Pareja told the Orlando Sentinel. “They’ve learned that during wins and losses we still have to put a foot forward. I’ve seen these players these last two days with a lot of desire, even players who are not usually playing showed how committed we are to this.”
The Lions are 2-0-2 in their past four meetings against Toronto, having last lost to the Reds on May 4, 2019.
Toronto (3-6-2, 11 points) heads into Saturday’s meeting looking to snap a four-game losing streak, including the last two by shutout. Toronto forward Jesus Jimenez headed into the weekend tied for the MLS lead with seven goals.
Toronto was moments away from earning a scoreless draw last Sunday against the Vancouver Whitecaps when Tosaint Ricketts delivered a goal in the 90th minute, sending the club home empty handed.
“If we can keep finding the right ways to push forward, I believe this team has it in them to get better,” Toronto coach Bob Bradley said. “The work for this group to become a good team was always going to take some time and was going to have ups and downs. This last stretch has been downs, but we’ve got to have the mentality and be strong together.”
Toronto has lost four consecutive games for the third time since the start of last season. Prior to last year, the club had not endured a four-game slide since 2015.
–Field Level Media