Orlando City

Orlando City Set to See Familiar Face in Joe Bendik



Nick Leyva, The Mand Land

Orlando City is set to take on the Philadelphia Union at Subaru Park at 7:30 this evening. Due to an injury to starting goalkeeper Andre Blake, backup Joe Bendik is expected to be between the posts for the Union. That name should be familiar to Orlando City fans, because Bendik is a former Lion, having played for OCSC from 2016 through 2018.

Bendik’s Time in Orlando

The former Orlando City number one joined Orlando City from Toronto in the summer prior to the start of the 2016 season, replacing fan favorite, Tally Hall. In the league since 2012, Bendik spent time with the Portland Timbers and Toronto FC prior to making his move south to Central Florida. In three seasons with the Lions, Bendik started 91 matches, logging 8,248 minutes in goal. To his credit, Bendik recorded 13 clean sheets for the club across the three seasons he spent in the City Beautiful, and in that time racked up 318 saves.

Bendik allowed 170 goals across the 91 matches he started, for an average of 1.8 goals allowed per match. He averaged a successful passing rate of 58.7% and stopped three penalty kick attempts. Across his three seasons, The Mane Land staff gave him a season-ending grade of 8 (2016), 7.5 (2017), and finally a 4.5 (2018) out of 10. As the quality dipped later in his career with Orlando City, he was eventually outplayed by current backup Adam Grinwis.

At the end of the 2018 season, Orlando City decided not to exercise the option on his contract but did retain his rights, which were purchased by the Columbus Crew for $50,000 in Targeted Allocation Money.

Bendik’s Journey Since Departing Orlando

Bendik split the 2019 season between the Columbus Crew and the Philadelphia Union. He has remained with the Union since the Crew traded him to Philadelphia for a second-round draft pick. Since his time as the starting keeper in Orlando, Bendik has been relegated to the role of backup, failing to find a starting role in MLS. He has only started 10 MLS matches and recorded 989 minutes since his departure from the City Beautiful. He has allowed 20 goals across those 10 matches and made 21 saves. Bendik has also not stopped a penalty since suiting up for Orlando, conceding four goals from the spot. Outside of MLS action, Bendik started for the Union in their 4-0 Concacaf Champions League win against Alianza FC on March 14.

With Blake nursing a grade-one adductor strain suffered in the Union’s match against the Chicago Fire, Bendik has been thrust back into the starting role, and while recent reports indicate Blake’s injury to be not as severe as initially feared, he was listed as out on the midweek availability report. So, it is likely that the Union will once again look to Bendik tonight when they face his former club.

What is your favorite memory of Joe Bendik? Do you think he will find success against his former club or will the Orlando City attack finally find the back of the net? Let us know in the comments below.


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