Competition: Major League Soccer – Orlando City vs. San Jose Earthquakes
Venue: Camping World Stadium – Saturday, June 18 – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST)
Match Odds: Orlando City 13/10 – Draw 23/10 – San Jose Earthquakes 21/10
Orlando City have only won once in their last nine MLS matches, which is quite dreadful considering they are expected to challenge for a playoff place this year.
With Kaka expected back, as well as Cyle Larin, Orlando will want to kick start a run of form that can send them into the postseason for the first time.
They will need to harness their strong home support for the rest of the campaign and Saturday’s clash with San Jose offers a good chance to pick up three important points.
The Quakes have had a few rough seasons but now they have a good chance at making the playoffs, as Dominic Kinnear has built a very good squad.
Key man Chris Wondolowski is still away with the USMNT, while pacey forward Innocent Emeghara is still on his way back from injury, so San Jose are a little light in the final third ahead of this one.
The next five games could be crucial for the Quakes as they host LA Galaxy, Toronto FC and FC Dallas in the coming weeks. They must continue to pick up points on a consistent basis if they are to secure a top six finish come October.
This will just the second meeting between the two sides. Last year’s clash in San Jose saw the pair share the spoils after a 1-1 draw in a game that saw Chris Wondolowski net his 100th MLS goal.
Orlando City will be without Pedro Ribeiro, Darwin Ceren and Rafael Ramos through injury. Kaka should return from the injury that ruled him out of Brazil’s Copa America squad, while Cyle Larin os also back having only been involved in friendlies while away on international duty.
San Jose Earthquakes are missing Marc Pelosi, Clarence Goodson and Mark Sherrod through injury. Innocent Emeghara and Matheus Silva are both doubtful. The worry is that Chris Wondolowski is still away with the USA and he is unlikely to be back in time for Saturday’s game. Alberto Quintero, Anibal Godoy, Kip Colvey and Simon Dawkins have all returned from international duty, though.
Orlando City’s last five: D/L/W/D/D
San Jose Earthquakes’ last five: L/W/D/D/L
Key Stat: Orlando City are now unbeaten in their last 13 home matches in MLS.
Key Player: Cyle Larin – The Canadian forward has been in fine form this season and has become a key part of this Orlando side. His presence will be key on Saturday yet again.
Orlando City 2-0 San Jose Earthquakes – San Jose likely to suffer without star striker Chris Wondolowski, who will be sorely missed. That absence will make a tricky away fixture even more of a challenge and we expect Orlando to win this one as a result, with Adrian Heath’s side looking in good shape ahead of this one.