Orlando City

Orlando City vs. Inter Miami CF: Preview, How to Watch, TV Info, Live Stream, Lineups, Match Thread, and More

The Lions and Herons renew the Tropic Thunder rivalry series with Orlando looking to build on Saturday’s win.



Image courtesy of Orlando City SC / Mark Thor

Welcome to your match thread for a Wednesday night Tropic Thunder matchup between Orlando City (3-5-3, 12 points) and the team’s Publix Enemies, Inter Miami CF (8-2-3, 27 points) at Inter&Co Stadium (7:30 p.m., MLS Season Pass on Apple TV+). It’s the second of the two scheduled meetings between the sides this season and the only scheduled meeting in Orlando.

Here’s what you need to know ahead of the match.


Orlando City is 5-5-4 in the series in all competitions, 5-4-3 in MLS play, 2-0-3 at home in league games, and 2-0-4 in all Orlando meetings against the Herons.

The most recent meeting was the most forgettable of all, a 5-0 loss for the Lions at Chase Stadium on March 2. Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi scored braces and Robert Taylor chipped in a goal in a match Orlando City was never in, as it was already 2-0 just 11 minutes after kickoff.

The last time the teams met in Orlando, the final result was a 1-1 draw on Sept. 24, 2023. Duncan McGuire brought Orlando back from a 1-0 deficit after David Ruiz had given the Herons a 1-0 lead early in the second half.

On Aug. 2 of last year, the teams met in Leagues Cup action. The Herons were fortunate to not see Messi sent off with a second yellow late in the first half and even more fortunate to get a soft penalty call on Antonio Carlos as they won, 3-1. Messi opened the scoring after being ignored in the box early. Cesar Araujo made up for his uncharacteristic defensive lapse by scoring 10 minutes later. Josef Martinez put Miami back on top with the Downy-soft penalty just after halftime and Messi sunk in the dagger in the final 20 minutes.

The teams also met in Fort Lauderdale in MLS play on May 20, 2023, with Orlando City winning, 3-1. Ercan Kara’s early goal was canceled out by Leonardo Campana shortly before the hour mark, but Martin Ojeda and Rafael Santos found the net in the second half to power the Lions to victory.

Inter Miami won at home, 4-1, on Oct. 5, 2022. Campana scored in the game’s first minute and Orlando City never settled in. Gonzalo Higuain added two goals — one from the spot — and Ariel Lassiter also scored before Kara pulled one back to spoil the shutout.

The first regular-season meeting of 2022 resulted in a 1-0 Orlando City win at Exploria Stadium on July 9, as a stoppage-time own goal by Damion Lowe was the difference between the Lions earning just one point or all three. The ball was sent into the box by Jake Mulraney.

The teams also met at Exploria Stadium on May 25, 2022 in U.S. Open Cup action, with the two sides needing extra time after a scoreless 90 minutes. In extra time, Miami got a goal from Jean Mota against the run of play, but Facundo Torres quickly equalized for Orlando. The match ended 1-1 and Orlando won the ensuing penalty shootout, 4-2. Bryce Duke was denied by Mason Stajduhar and DeAndre Yedlin missed the net during the spot kicks, while all four Orlando shooters scored.

The intrastate rivals played to a scoreless draw in Orlando on Aug. 27, 2021. Tesho Akindele missed a penalty in the match, but the Lions had several other good opportunities to score (but didn’t) in a wasteful performance. Orlando and Miami battled to a 1-1 draw at Exploria Stadium on Aug. 4, 2021. Carlos scored in first-half stoppage time but was knocked into concussion protocol on the play by Kelvin Leerdam. Kieran Gibbs equalized in the 66th minute on a header in front of a less-than-attentive Ruan. Akindele had a goal called back after video review for being offside and the teams split the points. Earlier in the season, the Lions came from behind in Fort Lauderdale to win 2-1 on a pair of brilliant goals by Chris Mueller and Nani on June 25, 2021.

In the final meeting of 2020, the Lions saw their 12-match unbeaten streak end on Oct. 24 in a 2-1 road loss in Fort Lauderdale. Miami defender Leandro Gonzalez Pirez’s header in the 89th minute was the difference after a Daryl Dike goal and an own goal off Robin Jansson saw the game tied up at halftime. The teams met in Orlando on Sept. 12, 2020 with Orlando battling to a 2-1 win on Mauricio Pereyra’s goal. The Lions had taken the lead on an own goal by Andres Reyes. Former Lion Brek Shea tied things up in the 65th, before Pereyra answered with a nice goal off the left post in the 69th minute.

The first meeting in Fort Lauderdale opened Phase 1 of Major League Soccer’s return to regular-season play after the MLS is Back Tournament. That one was an uncharacteristically sloppy match for the Lions, who fell 3-2 in Inter Miami’s first-ever home match. It was Miami’s first franchise win after an 0-5-0 start. Orlando trailed by more than one goal for the first time all season in that game. Dike and Nani provided the offense for Orlando, but Julian Carranza’s brace and Rodolfo Pizarro’s insurance goal were enough to lift the Herons.

The first Tropic Thunder match went Orlando City’s way, with Nani scoring late to lift the Lions to a 2-1 win over the upstarts from South Florida in the opening match of the MLS is Back Tournament. Despite it being a tournament match, it was also a league game. Juan Agudelo opened the scoring for the Herons, but Mueller equalized, setting the stage for Nani’s 97th-minute winner.


The Lions are coming off a 3-2 win on the road over the Philadelphia Union on Saturday. Mikael Uhre opened the scoring for the Union, but McGuire pulled the Lions level and Luis Muriel scored his first two MLS goals, lifting Orlando to a 3-1 lead. Timothy Ford awarded Philadelphia two penalties — one legit and one softer than Eiderdown. Daniel Gazdag took both, scoring on the first but getting denied by Pedro Gallese late in the game on the second. That snapped the Lions’ two-game losing streak and a three-match winless run.

Orlando City is just 1-3-2 at home this season, has lost its last two games at Inter&Co Stadium, and has gone unbeaten in its last three matches on its home patch.

Inter Miami is coming off a 3-2 road win at CF Montreal Saturday after falling behind 2-0 in the opening 32 minutes. Montreal conceded twice on the brink of halftime and Miami carried that momentum to a win. The Herons are 4-1-1 on the road in 2024 and have won three straight away from home since a 4-0 beatdown they suffered at New York Red Bulls on March 23.

Miami is one of the heavy favorites in 2024 to win MLS Cup. That’s not surprising, given the influx of former Barcelona stars. If we’re being honest with ourselves, Messi is playing in a league multiple levels below the talent of a guy widely considered the greatest of all time and who is still producing, so anything he accomplishes shouldn’t be terribly surprising. It’s like putting LeBron James on a team in the sixth-best basketball league and letting him bring some of his NBA teammates with him, who somehow don’t quite count as much as they should against the salary cap, but I digress…

The Lions must do what they can to limit Messi’s involvement as much as possible, while keeping a defender glued to Suarez whenever he arrives near the penalty area. Miami’s attack is formidable enough that it helps the team’s defense, as it is often difficult to dispossess the Herons and maintain extended spells of possession long enough to get at Inter Miami’s back line. Orlando should look to get forward quickly in transition as it did in Philadelphia. That’s what the Lions will have to do to have a shot at a victory.

It’s a rivalry game, so anything can happen.

“There’s always a way to prepare the games. Normally, we just make more relevancy in the way we think and how we can affect them,” Orlando City Head Coach Oscar Pareja said ahead of the match. “Obviously, we have to have references on the other teams and how, with our strategy, do we decide to impose our model or try and control them? In this case with Miami, we have a game that we played. We’ll try to make less mistakes than we did that day.”

The Lions will be without Ramiro Enrique (ankle), Michael Halliday (knee), Robin Jansson (ankle), and Tahir Reid-Brown (thigh), while Rafael Santos (shoulder) is questionable. As of this writing, the most recent availability report for Miami (dated last Friday) has the following players out: Jordi Alba (hamstring), Shanyder Borgelin (hamstring), Facundo Farias (knee), Ian Fray (knee), Diego Gomez (ankle), Federico Redondo (knee), and Robbie Robinson (knee).

Match Content

Official Lineups:

Orlando City (3-5-2)

Goalkeeper: Pedro Gallese.

Defenders: Rodrigo Schlegel, Wilder Cartagena, David Brekalo.

Midfielders: Cesar Araujo, Wilder Cartagena.

Attacking Midfielders: Ivan Angulo, Nico Lodeiro, Cesar Araujo, Martin Ojeda, Facundo Torres.

Forwards: Luis Muriel, Duncan McGuire.

Bench: Mason Stajduhar, Rafael Santos, Kyle Smith, Dagur Dan Thorhallsson, Abdi Salim, Felipe, Jeorgio Kocevski, Yutaro Tsukada, Jack Lynn.

Inter Miami (4-3-3)

Goalkeeper: Drake Callender.

Defenders: Franco Negri, Nicolas Freire, Tomas Aviles, Marcelo Weigandt.

Midfielders: Benjamin Cremaschi, Sergio Busquets, Julian Gressel.

Forwards: Robert Taylor, Luis Suarez, Matias Rojas.

Bench: CJ dos Santos, Jordi Alba, Noah Allen, Sergii Kryvtsov, Yannick Bright, David Ruiz, Lawson Sunderland, Leo Afonso, Leonardo Campana.


REF: Rosendo Mendoza.
AR1: Chris Elliott.
AR2: Jeffrey Greeson.
4TH: Elvis Osmanovic.
VAR: Fotis Bazakos.
AVAR: Tom Supple.

How to Watch

Match Time: 7:30 p.m.

Venue: Inter&Co Stadium — Orlando.

TV/Live Stream: MLS Season Pass on Apple TV+.

Radio: FM 96.9 The Game (English), Mega 97.1 FM (Spanish).

Twitter: For rapid reaction and live updates, follow along at @TheManeLand, as well as Orlando City’s official Twitter feed (@OrlandoCitySC).

Enjoy the game. Go City!


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