PREVIEW: Orlando City Hosts Portland Timbers Sunday Afternoon On ESPN
By Orlando City SC // April 8, 2018
4 p.m. ET at Orlando City Stadium
ABOVE VIDEO: Sights And Sounds – Orlando City vs. New York Red Bulls.
ORLANDO, FLORIDA (Orlando City SC) – Following Saturday’s 4-3 win over New York, Orlando City SC (1-2-1, 4 points) will host the Portland Timbers (0-2-2, 2 points) on Sunday, April 8, at 4 p.m. ET at Orlando City Stadium.
The match will be nationally televised on ESPN and transmitted on FM 96.9 The Game in English and La Nueva 990 AM in Spanish.
“Portland doesn’t have a win but Portland hasn’t played a home game. If you look at the performances you see a quality, quality side there with some very gifted attacking players in [Diego] Valeri and [Sebastián] Blanco and [Fanendo] Adi up top and guys that are joining in from midfield and outside backs that both get forward very well,” Lions head coach Jason Kreis said.
“We know that we need a result. We know that we need to start going here. We need to be able to win matches in a row. We need to get on winning streaks in order to do anything in this league and that’s our intent.”
Orlando City erased two deficits and found a late go-ahead goal against the Red Bulls on March 31. Sacha Kljestan earned his first assist as a Lion on Will Johnson’s first goal of 2018 before Dom Dwyer found the back of the net twice in his season debut. Four minutes after New York tied it in the 82nd minute, Scott Sutter ripped a shot that glanced off Josué Colmán and into the back of the net for City’s first win of 2018.
The goal was Colmán’s first as a Lion and came in his Orlando City Stadium debut. Dwyer earned his 12th career MLS brace and Sutter earned his first game-winning assist as a Lion. Meram picked up his second assist of the season on Johnson’s goal. Yoshimar Yotún and Mohamed El-Munir earned their firsts assists of the season on Dwyer’s goals.
The Lions are 2-1-0 all-time against Portland and won the only series meeting in Orlando on April 3, 2016. Brek Shea scored the game-winning goal and Joe Bendik stopped Adi’s penalty kick attempt as City routed the then-defending champion Timbers 4-1 at the Orlando Citrus Bowl.
Portland enters the match seeking its first win of the season. Most recently, the Timbers played to 1-1 and 2-2 draws at Dallas and Chicago, respectively. The match will be Portland’s fifth consecutive road game to start 2018 as Providence Park undergoes renovations.
Blanco leads Portland with three goals while Adi leads the team with two assists.
If they play on Sunday, Dwyer and Bendik will make their 150th career MLS appearances. Kljestan’s next assist will tie him with Andy Williams for the ninth-most regular-season assists in MLS history. Dwyer is three goals away from 100 in his professional career.
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