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MLS Snapshot: Orlando City 0-1 Atlanta United (video)

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The game in 100 words (or less): Friday night’s effort at Orlando City Stadium wasn’t the prettiest for either side but Atlanta United will gladly take three points from the fixture as the Central Florida venue proved to be a fortress once more. The Lions were far superior in their attacking threats throughout the match, testing USMNT and Atlanta goalkeeper Brad Guzan on multiple occasions. However, it was Hector Villalba that proved to be the difference when he blasted a long-distance effort to beat Joe Bendik in the 86th minute. Atlanta extends its unbeaten streak to four matches with Friday’s decision, keeping Tata Martino’s side in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, while Orlando City moves into fifth.

Three moments that mattered

36′ — Guzan stands tall, denies Rivas — Carlos Rivas thought he scorched this one (and he did…), but Brad Guzan acted like it was nothing as he held his ground to make the stop.

39′ — Spector gets ripped off by Guzan — The U.S. goalkeeper is at it again… What a save!

86′ — Villalba unleashes stunner to propel Atlanta — Sometimes it just takes one good hit as a striker.

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Man of the match: Brad Guzan

Goalscorers: Hector Villalba (86′)

Canada add star striker Larin to squad for Gold Cup KO rounds

Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP
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Canada are through to the knockout stage of the Gold Cup for the first time since 2009, and they’re calling in the big guns as they ready themselves for a quarterfinal matchup with Jamaica (most likely) on Thursday.

[ MORE: Player ratings from USA 3-0 Nicaragua | Three things we learned ]

Cyle Larin, the Canucks’ star striker from Orlando City SC (8 goals in 17 games this season), has been added to the 23-man squad as Octavio Zambrano’s one (of six allowed) roster change between the group stage and knockout rounds.

Larin, who was left off the roster for the group stage after he was arrested for driving under the influence on June 15, three weeks before the start of the Gold Cup, takes the place of Toronto FC left back Raheem Edwards. Larin has since returned to the field for Orlando City after undergoing an assessment by MLS’s Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health Program.

MLS Snapshot: Real Salt Lake 0-1 Orlando City SC

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The match in 100 words (or less): A physical, back-and-forth first half saw the visitors take the lead on with a well executed set-piece. RSL had moments, especially as it inched towards the halftime whistle, but otherwise the goal was the only true chance of the opening 45. Out of the break, RSL continued to push for a point at home with all the possession, but nothing would come their way as Joe Bednik made a big save. The Orlando City back line never looked truly troubled, making 31 total clearances to keep RSL out and bounce back from the awful loss in Chicago.

The moments that mattered:

17′ – A set-piece undoes RSL at home as Will Johnson strikes against his former club. A free-kick floated into the box and it fell to Jose Aha at the far post. Aha, free from his defender, clattered his header off the crossbar, but with RSL unable to clear the ball, Johnson pounces and gives Orlando City the early lead.

63′ – With Orlando City in the lead, Joe Bednik made a great play to keep the clean sheet alive. A nice ball from the flank by Joao Plata was chested down expertly by Jefferson Savarino right into the line of Luis Silva. The LA-born striker was free on goal, but Bednik came off his line to put his body on the line and smother the chance before Silva could get a shot off.

 Man Men of the Match: Jonathan Spector, Jose Aja

Goalscorers: Johnson (17′),

MLS Snapshots: Hat trick for Accam; MNUFC come back from 2-0

Photo credit: Chicago Fire / Twitter: @ChicagoFire
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The game in 100 words (or less): All hail King David Accam, the newest superstar of MLS — except, well, you know, he’s been doing this for a couple years now. It’s not his fault you hadn’t already taken notice. For too long, it was Accam and not much else for the Chicago Fire, who finished bottom of the league two straight seasons, in 2015 and 2016. Now, with the likes of Dax McCarty, Nemanja Nikolic and Bastian Schweinsteiger joining him in Bridgeview, Accam has ascended to his rightful throne as an MVP candidate. The 26-year-old Ghanaian international strengthened his case on Saturday, bagging three goals and an assist, playing a key part in all four goals, in Chicago’s 4-0 drubbing of Orlando City SC. Accam’s season stats now sit at 10 goals and six assists, for the Eastern Conference’s second-place team. If these kind of performances persist, don’t be surprised when Accam follows in Fabian Castillo’s footsteps, right off to Europe.

[ MORE: Transfer rumor roundup ]

Three moments that mattered

8′ — Accam rounds Bendik for 2-0 — The long-ball distribution from Bastian Schweinsteiger is perfect, but Accam still has a ton to do from there. He corrals the ball with his first touch, quickly goes around Joe Bendik, gets his wits about him and fires through an opening to make it David Accam 2-0 Orlando City SC. This one came just six minutes after his brilliant backheel finish for the opening goal.

52′ — Accam sets up Nikolic for 3-0 — The time and space afforded Accam is inexcusable from Orlando’s midfield remaining players in their defensive half of the field, but the through ball still required inch-perfect precision to find Nikolic.

63′ — Accam converts from the spot — No doubt about this one, as Accam slams home from the penalty spot to complete his much deserved hat trick.

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Man of the match: David Accam

Goalscorers: Accam (3′, 8′, 63′ – PK), Nikolic (52′)


Minnesota United 2-2 Vancouver Whitecaps

Three moments that mattered

45+2′ — Tchani heads a rocket past Shuttleworth — You’re not going to find many headers with more power behind them than this one from Tony Tchani, anywhere in the world, anytime.

50′ — Calvo heads down and past Ousted — Take, for example, Francisco Calvo’s goal five minutes into the second half… not quite as much behind it.

63′ — Thiesson hits it low, through traffic, for 2-0 — Jerome Thiesson’s equalizer needed eyes to make its way through a penalty area full of bodies.

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Man of the match: Kevin Molino

Goalscorers: Techera (17′ – PK), Tchani (45+2′), Calvo (50′), Thiesson (63′)

Video: Orlando City product scores crazy bicycle kick

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Goals like this one below never grow old.

Orlando City academy product Alejandro Pereira scored a brilliant bicycle kick for his Under-17/18 side in their 2-0 win on Thursday night during the U.S. Soccer Development Academy playoffs.

Orlando will continue its path in the Academy Playoffs on Saturday when they face off against Players Development Academy (PDA) U-17/18, before meeting Indiana Fire U-17/18 on Monday.