On a rainy Saturday afternoon in Ft Lauderdale, the Lions didn’t have much bite, and it showed.
Despite an early goal from Daryl Dike to put Orlando City in the lead, an own-goal from Robin Jansson just before half and an 89th-minute header from Leandro Gonzalez-Pirez cemented a 2-1 Inter Miami victory over Orlando City in Fort Lauderdale.
For Orlando, the loss snapped its club record 12-game unbeaten streak.
“There are things that happen during the season that alert you, wake you up, sent you sort of messages that you have to absorb and pay attention to,” head coach Oscar Pareja said after the match.
“But one thing that we’re not going to do is get desperate right now, for what? We will continue, the team is playing well,” added Pareja. “The team is doing what we have done during the year. That’s us, and we’re going to continue with that identity, and that’s us. We’re going to keep getting better, we will check and review, but we’re not going to allow us to just create some panic for anything.”
Orlando (8-3-8, 32 points) opened the scoring in the 12th minute when a long ball from Antonio Carlos found Dike on the run, muscling off Miami’s Nico Figal to strike the ball through the legs of goalkeeper John McCarthy.
Miami managed to level the score at 1-1 before halftime, when a shot from Blaise Matuidi deflected off Robin Jansson and in for an own-goal.
Diego Alonso‘s side dominated the majority of the second half, limiting Orlando to only one shot on target during the final 45 minutes.
In the 89th minute, a corner from Lewis Morgan connected with Gonzalez-Pírez to head the ball past Pedro Gallese for the go-ahead goal in the closing minutes of the match.
Recent signings Matheus Aias and Alexander Alvarado were made available for selection on Saturday, appearing on the bench for Orlando.
Aias later entered the match for Orlando in the third minute of stoppage time, but did not factor into the game much.
Up next, Orlando takes on Atlanta United on Wednesday at Exploria Stadium. Kickoff for the match is slated for 7:30 p.m.
12′ – Daryl Dike, assisted by Antonio Carlos (ORL)
45′ – Robin Jansson, own goal (MIA)
89′ – Leandro Gonzalez Pirez, assisted by Lewis Morgan (MIA)
Here’s how the Lions lined up
Orlando City XI (4-2-3-1): Pedro Gallese; Kyle Smith, Robin Jansson, Antonio Carlos, Ruan; Sebastian Mendez (Tesho Akindele, 59′), Andres Perea (Matheus Aias, 90+3′), Junior Urso, Nani, Chris Mueller (Benji Michel, 76′); Daryl Dike (Joey DeZart, 77′).
Bench: Brian Rowe, Kamal Miller, Alex De John, Rodrigo Schlegel, Alexander Alvarado.
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