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Columbus Crew SC vs. Orlando City SC | 2018 MLS Match Preview

Columbus Crew SC vs. Orlando City SC
2018 MLS Regular Season — Week 21

MAPFRE Stadium — Columbus
July 21 - 7:30 pm ET

WATCH: ESPN+, MLS LIVE on DAZN (Canada)

After failing to score a goal in a fourth straight road game without a win, capped by a 2-0 defeat at New York City FC, Columbus Crew SC relish a return to MAPFRE Stadium, where they’ve lost just once in their last eight games.

Orlando City SC, which snapped a nine-game losing streak with a 2-1 win over Toronto FC last Saturday, is hoping to put the disappointment of a 1-0 defeat in the U.S. Open Cup quarterfinals to the Philadelphia Union on Wednesday night behind them.

Columbus have lost just one MLS match against the Lions (4W-2D) – a 5-2 loss in August 2015 in Orlando. They have outscored Orlando 8-2 in the last four meetings.

Columbus Crew SC

Columbus (8-7-6) was the better team in the opening 45 minutes, but had no goals to show for it and it proved costly in a 2-0 loss at NYCFC Saturday night.

A poor clearance by Zack Steffen was picked off by second-half substitute Jonathan Lewis who followed his first-time attempt off the post with a pass to Jesus Medina, who broke the deadlock in the 80th minute. Anton Tinnerholm added a 90th-minute insurance goal before Eduardo Sosa was sent off for a late challenge against Maxi Moralez before the final whistle.

“It’s disappointing to not get any result, but I think you sometimes have to step back and look at the performance. I was pleased with the performance,” Gregg Berhalter said. “I think the guys did well. They did what we asked them to do. They put it all out there. They competed. We created a good number of goalscoring opportunities so, this is one of the situations in my mind that we’ll focus more on the performance than the result.”

  • Suspended: M - Eduardo Sosa
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: QUESTIONABLE: M - Mohammed Abu (left thigh injury), F - Adam Jahn (right knee injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Zack Steffen — Harrison Afful, Jonathan Mensah, Josh Williams, Milton Valenzuela — Wil Trapp, Artur — Niko Hansen, Federico Higuain, Pedro Santos — Gyasi Zardes

  • Notes: Federico Higuaín has five goals+assists in six games against the Orlando, tied for his fourth most against any MLS club since the Lions joined MLS in 2015. … The Crew has suffered losses in four of their last five league games (1W) in which they conceded 11 goals following a nine-game unbeaten run in which they allowed a total of seven goals.

Orlando City SC

After snapping a nine-game losing streak with a win over Toronto FC, Orlando (7-11-1) were eliminated in the Open Cup quarterfinals by the Union Wednesday night at Talen Energy Stadium.

Alejandro Bedoya scored the game’s lone goal in the 4th minute, putting a rebound under the crossbar after Earl Edwards Jr. saved a Fafa Picault header. Edwards did well to give the Lions a fighting chance with eight saves, but an equalizer never materialized.

“Bitterly disappointed, to be honest. I think we expected a lot more given the performance level on the weekend against Toronto. I thought that was really encouraging,” James O’Connor said. “When we look at that tonight, I don’t think we really got into the game, if I’m being honest.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: GK - Mason Stajduhar (Localized Ewing Sarcoma), D - Lamine Sane (quad injury), D - Jonathan Spector (hamstring injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Earl Edwards Jr. — RJ Allen, Chris Schuler, Amro Tarek, Mohamed El-Munir — Uri Rosell, Yoshi Yotun — Chris Mueller, Sacha Kljestan, Tony Rocha — Dom Dwyer

  • Notes: This will be Justin Meram’s first trip to Columbus since leaving the team last offseason. He is fifth in games played (188) and sixth in goals (37) in Crew MLS history, though he has just four goals+assists for Orlando this year. … Orlando City’s 2-1 win last weekend snapped a franchise-worst nine-game losing streak in which they failed to limit an opponent to less than two goals. They had scored once in their last four games.

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Columbus Crew SC 4 wins, 17 goals … Orlando City SC 1 win, 11 goals … 3 draws
  • At Columbus: Crew SC 2 wins, 7 goals … Orlando City SC 0 wins, 2 goals … 1 draw
  • Last meeting at Columbus: Columbus Crew SC 2, Orlando City SC 0 (April 1, 2017)

Officials

Referee: Silviu Petrescu
Assistant Referees: Gianni Facchini, Apolinar Mariscal
4th Official: Dave Gantar
VAR: Jon Freemon

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Current Form

Columbus
Orlando

Season Stats

Columbus Crew SCOrlando City SC
21Games Played19
8Wins7
7Losses11
6Draws1
24Goals27
25Goals Conceded42
226Shots205
86Shots on Target96
234Fouls committed209
207Fouls suffered234
54Offside47
126Corners107

Goals Scored

01234+TotalAvg
CLB94440241.1
ORL56431271.4
01234+Avg
CLB133401.9
ORL141311.9
01234+Avg
CLB811000.3
ORL423000.9

Goals Conceded

01234+TotalAvg
CLB76611251.2
ORL14833422.2
01234+Avg
CLB244101.4
ORL036101.8
01234+Avg
CLB522011
ORL112232.7
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