Tampa Bay Sports Day

MLS PREVIEW: Orlando City Closes Out Two-Game Road Trip


ORLANDO – Orlando City SC (9-14-9, 36 points) travels to face FC Cincinnati (6-22-4, 22 points) on Sunday, Sept. 29 to close out its 2019 regular-season road campaign with its first visit to Nippert Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. ET.

“[Cincinnati] have a lot of pace. Defensively the last couple of games, they’ve been very solid. Again it’s trying to understand the personnel who may play and then managing the transition moments because they have a lot of pace on their team,” Head Coach James O’Connor said. “It’s trying to be mindful of when we’re attacking we need to make sure that we’re very careful of how quickly they can transition into attack.”

The Lions will look to bounce back from a 2-1 loss to the Houston Dynamo this past Saturday. Dom Dwyer gave City the early lead with a finish from his head in the sixth minute, but the Dynamo were able to answer in the second half with finishes in the 70th and 73rd minutes respectively to secure the victory.

Nani leads the Lions with 12 goals this season, followed by Tesho Akindele with nine and Dwyer with seven. The Portuguese international also leads City in assists in 2019 with nine to his resume.

FC Cincinnati enters Sunday’s matchup following a scoreless draw to the Chicago Fire last Saturday at home. Sunday will serve as the final match for the Orange and Blue at Nippert Stadium in their inaugural MLS season.

Emmanuel Ledesma and Allan Cruz lead FC Cincinnati with six finishes apiece this season. Ledesma also leads Sunday’s opposition in assists with four in 2019.

The Lions will look for their second victory over Cincinnati this season on Sunday, having taken the inaugural meeting between the two sides with a 5-1 victory on May 19 in Orlando. Following this weekend’s match, City will close out the 2019 regular-season on Sunday, Oct. 6 when it hosts the Chicago Fire.