Undefeated at home to start the season, Orlando City’s quest for its first victory on the road fell short.
Tactical errors and Justin Meram’s two-goal performance pushed the Columbus Crew to a 2-0 win over the Lions on Saturday at MAPFRE Stadium.
“Disappointed to suffer our first loss in our first away game but a lot of positives from my point of view,” Lions coach Jason Kreis said. “It’s our third game of the season [so] it’s not too surprising to say that we weren’t deadly and real sharp in the attacking third of the field when we have to combine and make plays. That’s pretty typical so I’m not surprised by it and I’m not too disturbed by it. Obviously disappointed that we don’t get the result but I think we got a lot of positives that we are moving forward with.”
Meram opened the scoring in the 13th minute after a left-footed shot made its way inside the far post. The forward ensured the victory and secured his brace in the 77th minute.
Orlando fell to 2-1-0 in the season with six points on the Eastern Conference table. Columbus sit atop the East with 10 points with a 3-1-1 record.
The Lions outshot the Crew 14-6 and controlled 50.3 percent possession.
These were the lineups from both teams.
Orlando City SC – GK Joe Bendik, D Donny Toia, Jonathan Spector, José Aja (Tommy Redding 43’), Ⓒ Will Johnson, M Antonio Nocerino, Servando Carrasco (Cristian Higuita 62’), Giles Barnes, Matías Pérez García (Scott Sutter 71’), F Carlos Rivas, Cyle Larin
Substitutes Not Used: GK Josh Saunders, M Richie Laryea, PC, F Hadji Barry
Columbus Crew SC – GK Zack Steffen, D Harrison Afful, Nicolai Naess, Alex Crognale, Jukka Raitala, M Federico Higuaín, Justin Meram, Ethan Finlay (Niko Hansen 86’), Ⓒ Wil Trapp, Artur (Mohammed Abu 90+3’), F Ola Kamara (Adam Jahn 89’)
Substitutes Not Used: GK Brad Stuver, D Waylon Francis, Josh Williams, M Héctor Jimenez
Orlando City are back in action on Sunday, April 9 when it hosts the New York Red Bulls at Orlando City Stadium at 4 p.m.