Entering the game Saturday night, the Lions needed a win to remain on the outskirts of playoff contention. Instead, Orlando City let up an early two-goal lead, battled back to level it up, conceded again, and pulled out a late equalizer to manage only their second draw of the season at 3-3 against the New England Revolution in front of 23,879 in attendance at Orlando City Stadium.
Before 20 minutes passed in the match, Orlando found themselves down two goals. Defensive miscues in the back allowed Juan Agudelo to score in the 7th minute from a throw-in and Cristian Penilla to score in the 18th minute off a Shane O’Neill turnover.
“Honestly, I think it has to stop,” Orlando Head Coach James O’Connor said after the game. You can’t score three goals again. We get a tie this week, you got the Galaxy and you get three goals. You have to stop. You can’t give goals away like that. I mean, we’re 2-0 down in the blink of an eye and we’re not making teams work.”
“I’m waiting for a game where the other team is so generous and gives us the type of goals that we’re giving teams. I look forward when that happens.”
The Lions (7-14-2, 23 points) tallied 13 shots – 6 of which were on target, while the Revolution (7-7-8, 29 points) had 14 shots, and 5 of them on target.
Just a few minutes before halftime, Orlando captain Sacha Kljestan was fouled by New England’s Brandon Bye and remained down in some pain for a moment, before limping off the field and getting treatment. After coming back on the field for a bit, Kljestan was unable to continue and Josue Colman was called upon to replace him.
After the game, Kljestan was diagnosed with a right ankle injury and that he would be re-evaluated further over the next few days.
Just before the first half ended, Orlando managed to pull a goal back heading into the locker room. Yoshi Yotún sent a ball in for Tony Rocha, who crossed into Dom Dwyer for the finish.
The second half started with better play from Orlando as they created chances right out of the gate. It was Amro Tarek in the 71st minute that finally equalized the match off a set piece. Yotún delivered a free kick into the box that Tarek headed off the left post. The ball deflected towards goal and Revolution keeper Matt Turner was unable to keep it out, knocking it into his own net in the process.
Just minutes later, however, New England regained the lead through Teal Bunbury. The substitute, who came on just minutes prior to scoring, beat the entire Orlando City backline with a quick flick with his left foot. He then managed to strike the ball through the legs of Earl Edwards Jr. to put the away side back on top.
It began to look like so many other games the Lions have had this season, but in the 93rd minute, Stefano Pinho was able to earn a free kick and once again Yoshi Yotún served in a beautiful ball for Scott Sutter to get a head on and finish, tying the game up at 3-3.
On the restart after the goal, Dwyer was booked for a foul away from the ball and a scuffle broke out between the two opposing sides. After clearing up the fight, match referee Hilario Grajeda went to VAR and sent off Yoshi Yotún with a straight red card. Yoshi appeared to shove Jalil Anibaba, but the replay wasn’t conclusive. Yotún will now miss next week’s match at D.C. United as a result.
7′ Juan Agudelo (Brandon Bye)
18′ Cristian Penilla (Luis Caicedo)
45′ Dom Dwyer (Tony Rocha, Yoshi Yotún)
71′ Amro Tarek (Yoshi Yotún)
76′ Teal Bunbury (Juan Agudelo)
90’+3′ Scott Sutter (Yoshi Yotún)
Away at D.C. United on Sunday, August 12 at 8:00 p.m. ET.
How the Lions lined up
Orlando City XI: Earl Edwards Jr; Victor PC Giro (60′), Amro Tarek , Shane O’Neill, Scott Sutter; Cristian Higuita (70′), Tony Rocha; Sacha Kljestan (c) (44′), Yoshimar Yotun, Mohamed El-Munir; Dom Dwyer.
Bench: Joe Bendik, Josue Colman (44′), Chris Schuler, Will Johnson, Chris Mueller (70′), Donny Toia, Stefano Pinho (60′).
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