One game in 100 words: Breaks were taken during the match due to the intense humidity of Orlando, and towards the end of the contest, you could tell the conditions were plaguing D.C. United as the Eastern Conference leader’s pace slowed. The outcome of this game could’ve gone either way since neither team really dominated, and as is the case in these types of contest, one chance can decide the victory. Orlando created that moment by drawing the penalty kick and did well to keep their back line tight. The Lions unbeaten streak extended to five, while D.C. braved their second-consecutive loss.
Orlando: Kaka 30′
D.C. United: None
Three moments that mattered
28’ — Ribeiro draws PK — Pedro Ribeiro took an excellent reversal shot in the box and forced Bill Hamid into a diving save, but the Orlando City SC man did not end pursuit of the rebound, which Steve Birnbaum minimally cleared away. And Taylor Kemp, trying to corral the ball at the edge of the box, made contact with Ribeiro and drew the penalty kick. Granted, Ribeiro’s hard fall can be viewed as debatable, but in the end, he saw and took the opportunity to gain a very important advantage.
30’ —Hamid spectacular but Kaka buries — How many times will you see Kaka have his penalty kick efforts saved in MLS? Not many. But if there’s one goalkeeper who would stonewall the former Ballon d’Or winner, United netminder Bill Hamid would stand out as a definite choice. Kaka stepped up and struck a right-footer to the opposite corner of the net, and Hamid dove hard to stuff the attempt. Nonetheless, the try deflected right back to Kaka and he finished it with his head.
84’—Doyle lashes just wide — Former Derby County forward Conor Doyle came on as a substitute for Nick DeLeon in hopes of providing a decisive attacking spark, and he nearly carried out this intention. Midfielder Luis Silva stretched and tapped a pass to Davy Arnaud just outside the penalty box, and he flicked a crafty back heel to Doyle; the Texas-native smashed a one-timed shot that appeared very threatening but hurtled to the right of the post.
Orlando: Pedro Ribeiro (Carlos Rivas 83′); Tally Hall; Rafael Ramos, Aurelien Collin, Sean St. Ledger, Luke Boden; Erik Avila, Cristian Higuita, Lewis Neal (Amobi Okugo 83′), Kaka (Harrison Heath 90′), Brek Shea
D.C. United: Fabian Espindola, Jairo Arrieta (Miguel Aguilar 57′); Bill Hamid; Chris Korb, Bobby Boswell, Steve Birnbaum, Taylor Kemp; Nick DeLeon (Conor Doyle 74′), Perry Kitchen, Davy Arnaud, Chris Rolfe (Luis Silva 78′)