Orlando City SC draws against Columbus Crew at home
Orlando City SC fans were desperately wanting a win to cap off their Saturday night. The Lions record in the last five games has been a large disappointment during this stretch of the summer, accumulating four losses and one tie. The Lions welcomed the fifth-placed Columbus Crew team into their home, and are looking to climb the standings to make a last second push towards the playoffs. Jason Kreis knew the about of pressure in Saturday’s game, and had the following lineup for the game against Columbus:
The scene was set, with the crowd piling in chanting to amp up the team, while the players finished warming up and assumed their perspective positions. With the stadium roaring with intensity, the starting whistle blew and the teams set off. Orlando knew how important this game was, and demanding control of the game, and did so by having two shots on goal within the first 10 minutes of the games.
Orlando continued to apply pressure, attempting to weaken the Columbus defense, but unfortunately, the Lions could not score. Instead, Columbus was able to orchestrate a goal off of a free kick. Columbus was able to drive the ball into the box and Lalas Abubakar was able to head it in for a goal. The wind seemed to be punched out of the belly of the stadium, as the crowd felt as if the Lions had already lost. The Lions would, unfortunately, go into the locker room at halftime with the 1-0 deficit.
Despite the deficit at halftime, Orlando looked to bounce back and tie the game up to at least exit the game with one point and a draw against Columbus. While it seemed it was not going to be able to happen since Columbus was applying pressure to secure three points on the road, Orlando’s Giles Barnes was able to tie the game in the 67th minute. Barnes slides past the defense and lays the ball to the bottom left corner of the post, as it bounced off the left post and then the right post before rolling into the back of the net for the equalizer. Orlando then put on all the pressure, attempting to get out of this game with three points and continue their playoff push. But even after Columbus Crews Harrison Afful was sent off with a red card and bringing Columbus to 10 men, Orlando was still unable to capitalize even after 90 full minutes and about seven minutes of extra time.
With this game, Orlando still is slowly falling out of the playoff race, and the remaining schedule is not favoring Orlando’s side. It needs to bring in a string of wins to ensure they still have the potential of making the playoffs, and mainly to ensure the fans will still be interested after three full season of being let down by not making the playoffs.