SANFORD — Consistency will be key for Orlando City B (4-4-3, 15 points) when it hosts the Rochester Rhinos (4-1-3, 15 points) at Orlando City Stadium on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.
After a 2-1 win against the Pittsburgh Riverhounds at Highmark Stadium last Saturday, OCB head coach Anthony Pulis said it’s going to take a similar performance if his side intends to stop a Rochester team that’s on a five-game unbeaten run.
“Well I think when you go on the road you know you’re going to have to defend, and we went through a lot of because we were disappointed with [previous games]. We felt like we possessed the ball well, and got into some good positions, but people switched off in some critical moments,” Pulis told the Orlando Soccer Journal. “Thankfully we kind of ratified that in Pittsburgh, and it’s important that we’re consistent with that and we do the same [Wednesday] night against what will be a tough opponent.”
First-team player loaned to OCB, Hadji Barry had an impactful performance in Pittsburgh, scoring his second goal of the season. Barry equalized the score in the 42nd minute and later assisted Zach Ellis-Hayden for the eventual the game winner.
“I think having Hadji on the team helps us because he is very, very quick,” said Pulis. “He stretches defenses, and it allows us to open the front of the opposition for our attacking midfield players to get on it, which is what we did the other night.”
Another positive aspect Pulis emphasized on and expects to see from his players in Wednesday’s match is patience on finding the right moment.
“I thought our build-up was good and we spoke about the importance of being patient because Pittsburgh and Rochester will be similar,” Pulis added. “They get numbers behind the ball and will make it difficult to break it down. So it’s important when we get good possessions, we switch the play quickly but we’re patient with it, and wait for the right hole to open up and we don’t become impatient with it.”
Wednesday’s match will mark the third time the teams meet. During the 2016 season, their first encounter resulted in a 2-1 win for OCB, behind two goals scored by Barry on May 22 and followed by a scoreless draw on July 10.
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(Photo Courtesy of Orlando City)
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