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Orlando City vs. New England Revolution, Preseason Friendly: Final Score 6-2 as Lions Run Riot Against Revs

Orlando City ran amok against the New England defense in a lopsided win to capture the preseason tournament.

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Scott Carnevale, The Mane Land

Five different Lions scored in a surprising 6-2 thrashing of the New England Revolution in the final game of the Orlando City Invitational at Orlando City Stadium. The Lions captured the Orlando City Invitational title on goal differential after finishing 2-0 at the top of the table alongside Minnesota United, spurred on by four second-half goals in the span of about 10 minutes. It was the second consecutive comprehensive win, although it’s difficult to take too much away from preseason matches.

“I thought (the team’s performance) was excellent,” said Head Coach James O’Connor after the match. “I thought the movement was very good. I think we can be very pleased. Quite a number of the players had a really strong performance.”

O’Connor rotated his squad from Saturday’s lineup and gave mostly backups a run-out. He also started OCB defender Matheus Silva and 17-year-old Hamady Diop from SIMA’s Gold Team. Santiago Patino and Benji Michel flanked Josué Colmán on the forward line, in front of a defensive-minded midfield of Cristian Higuita, Cam Lindley, and Uri Rosell. Presumed starter Lamine Sané slotted into the back line with Dillon Powers as the starting right back. Greg Ranjitsingh started in goal.

New England started a lot more regulars, including Teal Bunbury and Cristian Penilla up front, which looked to be a mismatch against the back line of the Lions. However, it didn’t turn out that way in the end.

Ranjitsingh was called into action in the sixth minute, making a good reaction save on a header by Antonio Delamea. The shot came off a New England free kick out near the right sideline. The Revs controlled the ball early and tried to work through the Orlando defense, but two different attacks broke down when Penilla tried to flop to draw a penalty on Powers, who was well positioned.

Referee Robert Sibiga didn’t buy either dive and booked the Revs’ attacker after the second simulation in the 11th minute. Penilla was a non-factor after that.

Bunbury timed his run well and got in behind the back line in the 13th minute, but Sané’s recovery run bothered him just enough to make him send his shot wide of the far post. Three minutes later, Carles Gil fired a shot that Ranjitsingh stopped after a bad turnover by Silva.

Orlando then started to climb into the match. Patino forced a good save from Matt Turner in the 23rd minute and Michel made a great move to free himself on the right side a minute later, only to see Turner deny his attempt.

In the 29th minute, the Lions took the lead. Rosell fired inside the left post from the penalty spot after a handball on the Revs defense denied a Higuita cross from finding Michel on the right. Uri sent Turner the wrong way and easily put Orlando on the board.

“You don’t think about it,” Rosell said about his approach to the penalty. “You are there and you feel confident and you just say, ‘hey, I want to do it because I know I am going to score.’ And that’s what I did.”

Three minutes later it was Rosell again. This time he got free on the right side and tried to cross for a wide-open Patino at the back post, but Brandon Bye deflected the ball past his own goalkeeper, doubling the Lions’ lead in the 32nd minute.

Sané got a free header on a corner kick in the 43rd minute but hit his shot right at Turner. A minute later, the Lions should have made it three goals when a gorgeous passing play from Colmán and Lindley sent Patino in alone on the left. The rookie hit his shot inches wide of the back post on his best opportunity of the half. Orlando took its 2-0 lead into the break.

Orlando City blew the game open with three goals in a five-minute span early in the second half. Michel laid off a ball on the right for Lindley and the Homegrown midfielder made a perfect cross-field switch to Colmán in space. The Paraguayan smashed a shot inside the far post to make it 3-0 in the 47th minute.

Two minutes later, Rosell slipped a ball in for Patino and the rookie, who grew up in Orlando, blasted his shot through Turner to make it 4-0.

“It was an amazing feeling,” Patino said of his goal, which he scored in front of 12 friends and family members — a number he said would have been larger if he had been able to give out more tickets. “It’s always great to help the team and to score a goal. And as a forward, every goal helps with confidence and how you play. So tonight was great. We won. We won the tournament and it was great teamwork.”

Colmán’s pass found Higuita in the 51st minute and the Colombian made it 5-0.

“I thought he played very well. I thought his understanding of space was very good,” O’Connor said of Colmán. “Not just him. I thought there was a number of players who played really, really well. The intensity that they were able to play at was great to see. Everyone will leave encouraged by the work the players were able to put in tonight.”

The Lions added a sixth with Dillon Powers scoring from the penalty spot after Michel was in alone and was taken down by Turner after playing the ball in behind. Sibiga took it easy on Turner and only booked him when in a regular-season game it likely would have been a sending off for the last defender.

Teal Bunbury scored a pair of goals late in garbage time to pull something back for the Revs, but it was a comprehensive victory for the Lions.

Lindley, Colmán, Diop, Rosell, and Higuita played exceptionally well for Orlando City.

“There are so many positives that we’ll be able to draw upon, which is really encouraging,” O’Connor said. “The movement, the understanding of space was excellent. There are quite a few things we can be pleased about, but again, it’s preseason. For us, it’s fantastic to have the level of performance, considering we’ve changed out the whole 11. To get that level of performance is excellent.”

“I think we’re on a great path,” Rosell said. “We played two games with almost two different teams and both won, so that means we have a lot of depth, which is good for a long run. I feel like now we can start building from here.”

The Lions will play Minnesota United on Saturday afternoon in a closed-door friendly to finish the preseason.


New York City FC finished the Orlando City Invitational without a win, falling 1-0 to Minnesota United on an own goal by Ben Sweat. The Pigeons were outscored 3-1 in their two matches at Orlando City Stadium, while the Loons won both their matches by 1-0 scores on goals that should never have happened. Prior to beating NYCFC on an own goal tonight, Minnesota beat New England on Saturday on a howler of a giveaway outside the penalty area by goalkeeper Brad Knighton.

Lion Links

Lion Links: 6/13/24

Orlando City B hosts Chattanooga FC tonight, USMNT earns draw against Brazil, MLS’ Juneteenth celebrations, and more.

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Image courtesy of Orlando City SC / Mark Thor

How’s it going, Mane Landers? Between my cat finally deciding I’m worth hanging out with and reading a pair of books that have been collecting dust on my shelf, I’ve been having a pretty good week. I’m looking forward to the feast of soccer both in Orlando and abroad over the next few days as well. But for now, let’s get this Thursday started with today’s links!

Orlando City B Hosts Chattanooga FC Tonight

In an enticing midweek match tonight at 7 p.m., Orlando City B will take on Chattanooga FC at Osceola Heritage Park. If not heading to watch OCB in person, you can catch the game on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV+. The last time these two teams squared off was on May 4, with Chattanooga winning the penalty shootout for an extra point after a 1-1 draw in Tennessee. The Young Lions are coming off of a 2-2 draw with one of the league’s worst teams this season, Carolina Core FC, but winning the shootout after a late rally could give them the kind of momentum needed to take down Chattanooga. Beating one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference would be quite the statement from OCB during what’s been a middling season so far.

USMNT Draws With Brazil in Orlando

Playing in Orlando at Camping World Stadium, the United States Men’s National Team drew 1-1 against Brazil in a friendly billed as the Continental Clasico. Brazil scored first, but Matt Turner and the USMNT didn’t collapse under the pressure and earned the team’s first ever draw against the South American powerhouse. All in all, it was a much better result than the USMNT’s 5-1 loss to Colombia on Saturday. This was the USMNT’s final match until Copa America later this month. The Yanks will start their campaign against Bolivia on June 23 before playing Panama on June 27 and Uruguay on July 1.

MLS Announces Initiatives for Juneteenth

In partnership with Black Players for Change and Adidas, MLS announced some of the ways the league will be celebrating Juneteenth. Pre-match shirts acknowledging the change players can provide will be worn during warm-ups and fans can buy their own shirts as well, with a portion of the proceeds going toward organizations focused on racial equity and social justice. There will also be a campaign highlighting the connection between professional and academy players, as well as educational content across the league’s social media to raise awareness of the holiday.

Euro 2024 Kicks Off on Friday

A loaded gauntlet of summer tournaments finally begins Friday, as Germany hosts Scotland for the first match of Euro 2024. From Cristiano Ronaldo’s potential swan song to a brutal group that includes Spain, Italy, and Croatia, storylines abound for the tournament and each team brings something worth watching to the table. For Orlando City fans, defender David Brekalo was called up by Slovenia, which was drawn in a group with England, Denmark, and Serbia. I’m looking forward to seeing which underdogs prevail and which players make a name for themselves in this tournament.

2026 World Cup Schedule Revealed

The full schedule for the 2026 World Cup was unveiled, which gives a slight glimpse at the paths each host nation could take in the tournament. If the U.S. wins Group D after matches in Los Angeles and Seattle, it will stay on the West Coast for a knockout game in San Francisco before a potential round of 16 game in Seattle and quarterfinal in Los Angeles. Mexico and Canada have similar incentives to win their groups, as they will then host in their country until heading to the U.S. for the quarterfinals, should they make it that far. Here in Florida, Hard Rock Stadium in Miami will serve as the venue for four group games, a round of 32 match on July 3, a quarterfinal on July 11, and the third-place match on July 18.

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  • Orlando Pride Assistant Coach Yolanda Thomas was announced as a panelist for the Black Soccer Coaches’ summer symposium on July 22. She will also have a field session at the event to discuss the role of the midfield when building out of the back.

That’s all I have for you today. I hope you all have a wonderful Thursday and rest of your week!

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Lion Links

Lion Links: 6/12/24

Leagues Cup forgets Orlando’s U.S. Open Cup win, USMNT U-23 loses to Japan, NWSL expansion options, and more.

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Image courtesy of Orlando City SC

Welcome to Wednesday, Mane Landers. The USMNT plays tonight in Orlando, and I hope that you have tickets. If not, we can still watch as we wait for the Orlando City and Orlando Pride matches this Saturday. On a personal note, this Friday will mark my ninth anniversary with The Mane Land. It’s been a heck of a ride, and I’m glad you’ve been there with us. Here’s to many more years to come. Let’s get to the links.

Leagues Cup Forgets Orlando’s U.S. Open Cup Win

Orlando City is playing in the Leagues Cup starting at the end of July and here’s a nice guide to Orlando’s group for the tournament. Of course, the Leagues Cup organizers want you to be pumped so that you watch and buy tickets. I think that is something we should do simply to support the club. However, I don’t think they went about promoting the competition in quite the right way. In a tweet that has since been deleted, the tournament’s social media team stated the Leagues Cup would be Orlando’s chance to win its first trophy. Did you catch the mistake? Taylor Twellman did.

Good on you, Taylor. Facundo Torres was indeed brilliant in that match, as was Benji Michel. Of course, there were others that caught the faux pas as well.

I think we should also be mentioning the USL Championships, but what do I know? Evidently, more than the Leagues Cup’s social media team.

USMNT to Honor Pulse Victims

There’s plenty of fake, corporate shows of support for Pride Month , but in general I think that the USMNT and USWNT have done a good job of being legitimate allies to the LGBTQIA+ community. Tonight, the USMNT will play a friendly against Brazil at Camping World Stadium on the anniversary of the Pulse nightclub shooting. The players will be wearing Pride jerseys to honor those who lost their lives so senselessly eight years ago.

In terms of the game, the USMNT will be without Josh Sargent for the match, and Tyler Adams will only get limited minutes if he plays, as both are coming back from injuries. Get well before the Copa America, lads.

Lions on International Duty

The United States U-23 Men’s National Team lost 2-0 to Japan in its final friendly match before the Olympics. Orlando City’s Duncan McGuire found himself on a bit of an island up top as the U.S. had difficulty moving the ball through the midfield. Hopefully, the U.S. got such play out of its system heading into the Olympics.

OCB’s Wilfredo Rivera made the most of his time playing in Puerto Rico’s World Cup qualifier against Anguilla, scoring a brace in the 8-0 victory. This win comes after a scoreless draw with El Salvador last week and Puerto Rico’s remaining group games during this round of qualifying will be next June.

Exploring NWSL Expansion Options

The NWSL will be expanding to 16 teams in 2026 with many cities vying for the next franchise. The leaders include Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Minneapolis. Atlanta, Denver, and Jacksonville are potential choices as well. If it was to be given to either Atlanta or Jacksonville they would be regional rivals for the Orlando Pride. The league is expected to make a decision by the fourth quarter of 2024.

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  • Congratulations to the U-15 United States Women’s National Team, which won 4-0 over Germany.
  • Did you ever have one of those dreams that was a little scary, but also absolutely hilarious? This preview of Inter Miami’s new mascot is a bit like that. To misquote Jaws: “Ever seen an Inter Miami mascot’s eyes, Chief? He’s got lifeless eyes, black eyes, like a doll’s eyes.”
  • The Cayman Islands Men’s National Football Team forfeited its match against Cuba because many of its players are on visas in the United States. If those players were to travel to Cuba, the U.S. may have canceled those visas due to travel restrictions.
  • This is one of the most ridiculous no-calls I’ve ever seen. India got royally hosed.

That will do it for today. Check back as we get you ready for the Orlando City and Orlando Pride matches this Saturday night. Vamos Orlando!

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Lion Links

Lion Links: 6/11/24

Julie Doyle up for Goal of the Week, scouting Brazil ahead of USMNT match, Valencia fans convicted of racial abuse, and more.

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Dan MacDonald, The Mane Land

Happy Tuesday, everyone. After a brief break, Orlando City will be back in action when it takes on LAFC at home on Saturday. The Orlando Pride will visit a struggling North Carolina Courage side on the same day, while Orlando City B will have an oddly placed Thursday match against Chattanooga FC. With such a busy week ahead of us, it’s little surprise that we have a lot to talk over this morning. Let’s get into it.

Julie Doyle Up for Goal of the Week

Pride forward Julie Doyle has been nominated for NWSL Goal of the Week for her strike against the San Diego Wave during Friday’s 1-1 draw. Doyle opened the scoring in the 36th minute with an extremely well taken goal that came from a Barbra Banda assist. The Zambian forward made a run down the right wing and crossed for Doyle, but the ball was a little behind her and the chance looked to have gone. It hadn’t though, because Doyle contorted her body, hung out a foot, and let the momentum from the ball carry it into the back of San Diego’s net. Make sure you go vote for her to win!

Brazil Scouting Report

The United States Men’s National Team will play its final friendly before Copa America Wednesday night at Camping World Stadium in Orlando. The idea of any USMNT game is slightly nauseating after the Yanks were throttled 5-1 by Colombia on Saturday, but the fact that they’ll square off against a loaded Brazil side means things aren’t going to be any easier. While Brazil has struggled early in World Cup qualifying, it will likely run out a front three of Rodrygo, Vinicius Jr., and Raphina that’s capable of causing plenty of damage. Brazil prefers to control the ball and build from the back with short passing movements, but has no qualms about ceding possession and breaking on the counter, something that caused no shortage of issues for the U.S. against Colombia.

Valencia Fans Convicted of Racial Abuse

A trio of Valencia fans will serve eight months in prison after being convicted of racially abusing Vinicius Jr. Additionally, they are barred from entering soccer stadiums for two years and will pay for court proceedings. The convictions are the first for racism in professional soccer in Spain, and a case was opened after the fans made monkey noises and gestures during a game in May of 2023. The Brazilian forward in particular has faced racial abuse during his time playing in Spain, but he’s far from the only player, as the trial for a fan accused of abusing Inaki Williams during a match in 2020 has still yet to even begin.

The Soccer Tournament Concludes

The Soccer Tournament wrapped up Monday night with a pair of engrossing championship matches. In the women’s bracket, US Women defeated the North Carolina Courage 6-3, with Talia Dellapuerta scoring the winning goal. US Women featured United States Women’s National Team greats Heather O’Reilly and Ali Kreiger, and the team won the first women’s edition of the tournament and the $1 million prize that comes with it.

On the men’s side, former Orlando City player Nani and his team, Nani FC, fell to La Bombonera, which scored mere minutes into the match and never looked back on its way to a convincing 4-0 win. La Bombonera becomes the second team to win it all following Newtown Pride FC’s victory in last year’s inaugural tournament.

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That’s all I have for you this morning. Vamos Orlando!

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