VIDEO: Orlando City Nails 90th Minute Equalizer To Avoid Defeat Against New England On the Road
By Orlando City SC // May 1, 2016
ABOVE VIDEO: In a thrilling second half finish, Orlando City SC (2-2-4, 10 points) displayed impressive tenacity to come back in typical Orlando City fashion in the waning moments of the match to salvage a point against the New England Revolution (1-2-7, 10 points) following Carlos Rivas’ 90th-minute equalizer. (Orlando City SC Video)
ORLANDO, FLORIDA – In a thrilling second half finish, Orlando City SC (2-2-4, 10 points) displayed impressive tenacity to come back in typical Orlando City fashion in the waning moments of the match to salvage a point against the New England Revolution (1-2-7, 10 points) following Carlos Rivas’ 90th-minute equalizer.
“I always thought we looked dangerous during the night, certainly on the counterattack. I thought there was some really good control of possession in the first half and obviously we made the changes later on and have a go at it,” Lions head coach Adrian Heath said.
“Fortunately Carlos gets the goal but I thought Júlio Baptista gave us a lift as well when he came on. Overall, would I have accepted a point before the game? You bet I would.”
“I think this is one of the most difficult places in MLS to come and play so for us to go away with a point after the last two or three weeks, I’m delighted,” said Heath.
In the second 2-2 draw between these two teams in 2016, and their third in four MLS encounters, the Lions’ persistent efforts, highlighted by Kevin Molino’s third goal of the season, a late heroic finish from second-half substitute Rivas – his first in MLS – and timely, impressive saves by goalkeeper Joe Bendik allowed City to come back from two one-goal deficits and secure a point on the road.
New England got on the board just eight minutes in when Uruguayan Diego Fagundez dribbled into the box from the right wing, worked a give-and-go with Lee Nguyen 10 yards from goal and fired a high shot over Bendik.
Orlando City built up several threatening attacks, particularly up the right side with Rafael Ramos and Adrian Winter, and finally broke through in the 30th minute on a play started by Winter.
The Swiss midfielder, who looked lively all evening, was pressed against the sideline when he flicked the ball around Donald Smith and chased it down before crossing to Cyle Larin in the box. The ball floated over Larin but found Molino, whose left-footed shot beat New England goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth.
After New England regained the lead in the 71st minute on Juan Agudelo’s finish, Heath inserted attacking threats Rivas and Baptista aiming to secure a point in one of MLS’ toughest grounds to play in – successfully accomplishing it in the 90th minute of the game.
The Lions found the equalizer when Baptista lobbed a ball ahead to Cyle Larin, who dribbled into the box and held off his defender before firing a low cross into Colombian Designated Player Rivas for the tying goal.
Rivas’ goal triggered a frantic finish to the game. Both teams threatened to steal the three points in the five minutes of stoppage time, but Bendik’s outstanding efforts just minute before the final whistle, saving a Kelyn Rowe shot just yards from goal, and Agudelo’s header off the crossbar, sealed the 2-2 draw at Gillette Stadium.
Orlando City returns to action against the New York Red Bulls at Camping World Stadium, previously known as the Orlando Citrus Bowl, on Friday, May 6. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. E.T.
For tickets, visit www.OrlandoCitySC.com or call 855-ORL-CITY.