US Open Cup Final: Are the MLS “Favorites” Scared?

Orlando City’s wait for a first-ever trophy during the club’s MLS era ended Wednesday night. As Oscar Pareja’s side beat Sacramento Republic with a trio of late goals in the 2022 US Open Cup final.

Facundo Torres scored twice in five minutes while Benji Michel added a stoppage-time equalizer to lead the Lions past. Their USL rivals 3-0 at the Exploria Stadium. Orlando City became the 11th MLS franchise to lift the US Open Cup. And the triumph also secured their birth into the 2023 Concacaf Champions League.

The Sacramento Republic held their own for most of the game. Frustrating the MLS hosts and keeping their lively attack at bay. Republic goalkeeper Danny Vitiello had nothing to do in the opening 70 minutes of the match. As he watched his teammates block five shots from Orlando City players.

Last minute goal

Just a minute after Douglas Martinez’s header forced Pedro Galles into his first save of the game. The Lions broke the deadlock through Torres’ left-foot strike. The 22-year-old fired a one-time shot from behind the goal of the Republic. And collected by beating Vitiello into the upper left corner.

After taking a 1-0 lead, the Lions kept their foot on the gas and Michel’s. 79th-minute push helped his side win a penalty. Dan Casey tripped Michel in the box, allowing Torres to score his second goal. Within five minutes for a 2-0 advantage.

Torres played distributor in the final tally of the game. Setting up Michel for a confident finish into the bottom left corner of Vitiello’s goal. It was the second Open Cup game that Michel scored.

The victory not only gave Orlando City its first trophy in club history. But it was also the fifth consecutive win in all competitions for the Eastern Conference side. Orlando City is fifth in the MLS East and will travel to first-place Philadelphia Union on Saturday.

The recent interview on US open cup

In a recent interview with MLS Extra Time Radio. Orlando City SC head coach Oscar Pareja praised his USOC final opponents. “We have a lot of respect for Sacramento, too – we think they did a great job getting to the finals.” Then, less than 24 hours before kick-off in the US Open Cup final. Which was due to be played on their home ground, allegations of spying on the visitor’s training emerged. A spokesman for Orlando City admitted: “The club has been made aware of matters relating to Sacramento training and working with the U.S. Soccer.

The Sacramento Republic landed in Orlando just 72 hours after suffering a disappointing. Away loss to USL Championship Eastern Conference leader Louisville City. Head coach Mark Briggs made 10 changes ahead of this USOC final. Even subbing out Lee Desmond, Wednesday’s likely starter, in the 37th minute after the Republic scored the first-half equalizer. What they didn’t count on was Lou City going ahead again just before half-time. Then an hour and fifteen-minute delay at the start of the second half. When the teams returned, most of the home fans went home. And those who stayed were rewarded with a pretty entertaining game and the third goal for Louisville in the 87th. US Open Cup

Team strengths

The USL could and should have worked with the teams that remained on the schedule to give Sacramento at least a week of preparation before heading to face an MLS team with a bigger budget, home court advantage and Boris and Natasha working for the team. Front office. In truth, it may mean nothing more than a distraction from the football on offer. Sacramento is currently in 4th place in the USL-C Western Conference with 7 games to go, including a home game this Saturday against Loudoun United. Since their impressive USOC semi-final victory, Republica’s form has been inconsistent with three losses and two wins from their last five.

They have 10 different scorers on 39 goals for the season and have a +6 GD in league play. Rodrigo Lopez, who has been key in their cup run, has not scored since the August 6 match against RGV Toros. It will be crucial for Sacramento to get their goal early and make the hosts chase them – they have won 4 of their 6 games by scoring early, making teams chase them and adding one at the end to seal it. They couldn’t do it against Sporting, but SKC didn’t do anything either the game went to penalties and they blew out the USL2 opposition 6-0 in their opener. Sacramento outscored their USOC opponents 14-2, and Lopez is the tournament leader in goals with 4 – adding to become the first non-MLS team since the Rochester Rhinos in 1999 to win the tournament.

Orlando City

The history of Orlando City SC is a bit convoluted – the team was originally founded as the Austin Aztecs in 2008, moved to Orlando and renamed Orlando City with the full intention of re-attaching the team to Major League Soccer. In 2011, their first year as Orlando City, they won the regular season title as well as the USL Pro Championship – they won the regular season title again in 2012 and won the USL Pro Championship again in 2013. They didn’t manage to win in 2014 either. , their final year in the USL. The rights to their USL team now reside with Louisville City – who just defeated the Sacramento Republic in their respective league.

Since joining MLS in 2015, Orlando City has finished no better than 5th in the Eastern Conference and has only even made the playoffs in the last two seasons. That being said, they are currently sitting in a playoff position and riding a four-game winning streak. Unlike Sacramento, Orlando City had the entire week off and is coming off a 3-2 win over CONCACAF Champions League winners Seattle Sounders. They also scored 35 team goals in the regular season, but gave up 40 and have a -5 goal differential. Facundo Torres, Ercan Kara and Tesho Akindele are in good form, with two goals each in the last four regular season games.

Conclusion

Orlando advanced to the US Open Cup in the third round with a 2–1 win over USLC team Tampa Bay Rowdies; they also beat Philly Union 2-1 and then had to go to penalties in both wins over Inter Miami and Nashville. However, in the semi-finals. They completely blew away the NY Red Bulls 5:1 and have a total of 9 scorers with 11 goals. Unfortunately for the home team, one of their DPs (Designated Players), Alexandre Pato, flew home to Brazil for knee surgery. Oscar Pareja should still have plenty of firepower. Home-field advantage and a beleaguered opponent – he has no excuse to lose this game. And no reason to put a spy on their underdogs’ training.

Ultimately, even though the allegations are serious, Orlando denied that the observer with ties to the club reported anything. Meanwhile, Sacramento said they had to park team vans to block the uninvited guest. From watching the session he moved around them and continued to watch. We’ll see what the day brings – hopefully, the US Open Cup final. Follow the sports category The info is from this tweet.


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