Life is good for USL Pro club Orlando City.
After purchasing a new plot of land for a future stadium and weeks of being rumored as one of the possible destinations for Major League Soccer’s next club, the Florida-based outfit eliminated Sporting Kansas City from the U.S. Open Cup last night by a score of 1-0.
Last year’s Champions were dumped out at home after Orlando City striker Tan Long netted in the second minute of play. It was the second MLS scalp the Lions have taken this season, having beaten the Colorado Rapids 3-0 on May 28th in the third round of play.
The hosts came into the match looking to make amends for their previous match, a 2-1 home loss to Montreal on June 1st. But with Graham Zusi, Matt Besler, Kei Kamara all out on international duty, Sporting lacked the punch to get the job done despite registering 18 shots in defeat.
Peter Vermes’ side came close through C.J. Sapong and Paulo Nagamura but goalkeeper Orlando City Miguel Gallardo was up to the task. The 28 year old netminder was simply fantastic on the night.
With the victory, Orlando City extend their unbeaten streak to 14 matches and have sealed their place in the U.S. Open Cup quarterfinals where they will face the winner of Chicago and Columbus. The last time a lower league side won the U.S. Open Cup was in 1999 when the Raging Rhinos of Rochester beat the Colorado Rapids 2-0.
Here’s how the rest of U.S. Open Cup action panned out:
- Carolina Railhawks upped their unbeaten streak to five matches by knocking off Chivas USA, 3-1 in extra time
- A cracking volley by Michael Nanchoff handed Portland a 2-0 win over Tampa Bay
- New England continued its offensive onslaught beating the Red Bulls 4-2
- Kenny Cooper’s brace helped FC Dallas to a 3-0 victory over rival Houston
- Real Salt Lake came from two goals down to crush Charleston Battery 5-2 in extra time
- D.C. United beat Philadelphia 3-1 behind a Dwayne De Rosario hat-trick
Here’s the U.S. Open Cup fixture list for the Round of 16:
- Real Salt Lake v. Carolina
- D.C. United v. New England
- Chicago/Columbus v. Orlando City
- FC Dallas v. Portland