Lions Fall to Nashville SC on Decision Day
ORLANDO, Fla. - Orlando City SC (11-4-8, 41 points) fell 3-2 to 2020 expansion side Nashville SC (8-7-8, 32 points) on Sunday afternoon in its Decision Day fixture presented by AT&T.
Daryl Dike and Nani scored for the Lions in the match, with Dike finding the back of the net for the eighth time this year and in his fourth-consecutive appearance for the side. The Lions' captain netted his sixth goal of the season with a stunning free kick in the 61st minute, now with 11 goal contributions on the year.
With the result, the Lions finish the regular season at No. 4 in the Eastern Conference, set to host 2015 expansion rivals New York City FC to begin the 2020 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs at Exploria Stadium. The date and time for that match will be confirmed at a later date.
Head Coach Oscar Pareja:
"Indeed it was a game that brought moments where we were frustrated, especially the way it ended, but we can't forget what the boys have done during this year. They qualified in the playoffs, they qualified in the best four in a tough conference and they'll be ready for playoffs. Today obviously at the game it did not end the way we wanted, so we need to sharpen things, especially in those key moments of concentration and it has been something that we have been working on. We will keep doing it, but the boys have done an excellent job and today more than ever before, I'm proud of them and I'm with them. It's a moment in the competition when you want to win and you have the game there, but this is the league and we'll be ready."
4' Daryl Dike (Chris Mueller) - ORL 1, NSH 0
The Lions took the early lead, with Chris Mueller taking his space up the middle of the pitch before laying the ball off to Daryl Dike at the edge of the area. The 2020 MLS SuperDraft selection took one touch into the box before firing his shot into the far post for his eighth finish of the year and his third against the opposition.
20' Daniel Lovitz - ORL 1, NSH 1
The visitors leveled after Daniel Lovitz took a shot from the edge of the area that was blocked by a City defender, but bounced right back to him with his second attempt finding the top-left corner of the net.
61' Nani - ORL 2, NSH 1
City regained its lead with Nani whipping in a free kick from just outside the area that curled into the top left corner of the net for a stunning finish.
88' Hany Mukhtar (Alex Muyl) - ORL 2, NSH 2
Nashville leveled late after a cross from Alex Muyl found the head of Hany Mukhtar in the box, who hit it into the back of the net for the equalizer.
90+3' Jhonder CÃ¡diz (Hany Mukhtar) - NSH 3, ORL 2
The visitors scored the late game-winner after a free kick from the right side from Hany Mukhtar found Jhonder CÃ¡diz in the middle of the area, who was able to head it in for the finish.
Daryl Dike scored his eighth goal of the year in the match, now with a finish in each of his last four appearances for the Club. The 2020 MLS SuperDraft selection has found the back of the net against Nashville three times on the year, recording a brace in the first matchup between the two clubs on Aug. 26.
Nani scored his sixth goal of the year in the match, now with 11 total goal contributions this season.
Chris Mueller registered his seventh assist of the year in the match, now just one shy of Mauricio Pereyra for the team lead.
Robin Jansson registered his 50th start for City on the night.
Jordan Bender made his first MLS start on the afternoon after signing a Homegrown contract with the Club ahead of the 2020 season.
Head Coach Oscar Pareja made three changes to his starting XI in the match, with Brian Rowe, Jordan Bender and Daryl Dike entering the lineup.
Next Match: The Lions will return to Exploria Stadium to host its first playoff match in Club history, set to face 2015 expansion rivals NYCFC, with the date and time yet to be determined.
Teams 1 2 F
Orlando City SC 1 1 2
Nashville SC 1 2 3
ORL - Daryl Dike (Chris Mueller) 4'
NSH - Daniel Lovitz 20'
ORL - Nani 61'
NSH - Hany Mukhtar (Alex Muyl) 88'
NSH - Jhonder CÃ¡diz (Hany Mukhtar) 90+3'
ORL - Andrés Perea (Yellow Card) 17'
NSH - Derrick Jones (Yellow Card) 28'
NSH - AnÃbal Godoy (Yellow Card) 29'
NSH - Dax McCarty (Yellow Card) 37'
Orlando City SC - GK Brian Rowe; D Kyle Smith, Robin Jansson, Antonio Carlos, Ruan; M Jordan Bender (Tesho Akindele 46'), JÃºnior Urso (SebastiÃ¡n Méndez 72'), Andrés Perea (Matheus AiÃ¡s 90+1'), Chris Mueller (Benji Michel 71'); F Nani © (Joey DeZart 87'), Daryl Dike
Substitutes Not Used: GK Mason Stajduhar; D Kamal Miller, Rodrigo Schlegel; F Alexander Alvarado
Nashville SC - GK Joe Willis; D Daniel Lovitz, Dave Romney, Walker Zimmerman, Alistair Johnston; M Randall Leal (Handwalla Bwana 69'), Dax McCarty © (Matt LaGrassa 46'), AnÃbal Godoy (Tah Anunga 46'), Alex Muyl, Derrick Jones (Hany Mukhtar 76'); F Daniel RÃos (Jhonder Cadiz 46')
Substitutes Not Used: GK Elliot Panicco; D Jalil Anibaba, Eric Miller, Taylor Washington
Details of the Game:
Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
Date: November 8, 2020
ORL - 51.9%
NSH - 48.1%
ORL - 13
NSH - 11
ORL - 3
NSH - 2
ORL - 13
NSH - 13
ORL - 3
NSH - 6
Heineken Star of the Match: Nani
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