Competition: Major League Soccer – Orlando City vs. Seattle Sounders
Venue: Citrus Bowl – Sunday, August 7 – 00:00 BST (19:00 EDT)
Match Odds: Orlando City 11/10 – Draw 12/5 – Seattle Sounders 11/5
Orlando City host the Seattle Sounders on Sunday in a clash between two sides that need to improve. Both sides have lacked form recently but will feel this is a chance for three points.
With a win in their last game and Kaka’s injury worries hopefully gone, Orlando are in a good position to push on now under new head coach Jason Kreis.
Currently sitting in sixth in the Eastern Conference. Orlando will be hoping for more comfort in those playoff spots in the coming weeks and need to keep their solid home record up with another positive result against Seattle on Sunday.
Last week’s 3-1 victory over New England ended a five-game winless run for the Lions and they now need to build on that display.
Seattle Sounders have been dismal this year and you don’t have to dig too far to know why. They have lost key players in Obafemi Martins, Marco Pappa, Gonzalo Pineda and Lamar Neagle and have failed to replace them.
The losses of these key players has added to the responsibility of Clint Dempsey and he has struggled to keep his side competitive throughout.
The major boost is that new DP Nicolas Lodeiro looked excellent on his MLS debut against LA Galaxy last weekend and he will have Seattle fans excited for the remainder of the campaign.
The Sounders played much better last weekend but still couldn’t find the win as they settled for a 1-1 draw with LA. They still sit ninth in the West but new head coach Brian Schmetzer will be looking to turn their season around with a miraculous run of form, starting on Sunday in Florida.
Orlando City are without four first teamers as Pedro Ribeiro, Harrison Heath, Rafael Ramos and Tommy Redding are all injured.
Seattle Sounders will be without Roman Torres and Aaron Kovar, who are both out with injuries. Erik Friberg is a doubt with an ankle sprain. The positive for Seattle is that Roman Torres is closing in on a return after a long time on the sidelines.
Orlando City’s last five: D/L/D/D/W
Seattle Sounders’ last five: L/W/L/L/D
Key Stat: Orlando are unbeaten in their last 17 home matches in MLS – a run which began on August 1 last year.
Key Player: Cyle Larin – The 2015 no.1 draft pick has lived up to the hype so far as Orlando’s primary striker. He has not suffered a sophomore slump and already has 11 goals this season. It would be surprising to see him not add to his tally here.
Orlando City 1-1 Seattle Sounders – Both sides are out of form and are struggling to stay consistent. Orlando come into this one off the back of a win and will expect to edge it as Jason Kreis continues to get his philosophies across to his new side. However, both sides have positives to build on from last weekend and we expect honours to be even in a tense match.