Competition: Major League Soccer – Orlando City vs. New York City FC
Venue: Orlando City Stadium – Sunday, May 21st – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)
Match Odds: Orlando 23/20 – Draw 12/5 – NYCFC 21/10
Orlando City host New York City for the third time already this season on Sunday night with both sides looking to get back to winning ways after a disappointing couple of weeks.
Orlando came flying out of the blocks this season, winning six of their opening seven games to lead the Supporters’ Shield standings. However, they’ve managed no wins in their last four and come into the weekend off the back of a 1-1 draw at San Jose.
They have still yet to lose at home this season, although their 2-2 draw with Sporting KC last weekend means their 100% home record at the new Orlando City Stadium has now gone. The aim this weekend will be to get a win over NYCFC – just as they did in the inaugural match at the new stadium back in Week One.
The visitors know they have another tough test coming up. NYCFC fell 2-1 at Real Salt Lake on Wednesday night, despite taking the lead in that game, and must look to bounce back with a first win in three attempts over Orlando this season.
The two sides met on opening weekend, with Orlando picking up a 1-0 win before then winning 2-1 at Yankee Stadium just a month ago. New York City have only won one of their nine MLS games against Orlando since both sides entered the league in 2015.
A fierce rivalry has developed between these two and Sunday’s game will be their last meeting of the year, unless they meet in the playoffs later on in the year, so expect this one to be entertaining from the word ‘go’.
Orlando City’s only injury concern coming into the weekend is Kevin Alston, who will miss out with an ongoing knee injury.
New York City FC remain without Ronald Matarrita, while Khiry Shelton is still listed as ‘questionable’ as he struggles with a hamstring strain.
Orlando City’s form: W/L/L/D/D
NYCFC’s form: L/W/W/D/L
Key Stat: NYCFC have yet to win a game away at Orlando City, losing their last three on the bounce.
Key Player: Cyle Larin – The Canadian star loves scoring goals against New York City. He’s now scored nine times in seven games against them – his best record against any team in MLS. If anyone was going to prove the difference again here, it would surely be Larin.
Orlando City 2-1 New York City FC – It’s difficult to see the trend changing this weekend as Orlando look to remain unbeaten at home against an NYCFC side that struggle to overcome them. Strong chances can be made for both, but ultimately, the Lions look set to make it three out of three this season with another home victory.