Orlando City SC 2, Toronto FC 1 | 2018 MLS Match Recap
Chris Schuler and Dom Dwyer scored on either side of the break before a Nick Hagglund consolation as the Lions cruised to a 2-1 victory at Orlando City stadium over defending champion - and fellow strugglers - Toronto FC on Saturday night.
With the win, Orlando snapped a nine-game losing streak, while Toronto themselves have only one win in nine dating back to the end of May.
Schuler opened the scoring with a close range header after Toronto goalkeeper Alex Bono spilled a Dwyer shot from five yards beyond the top of the box. Dwyer rounded out the scoring shortly after the restart with a pile-driver from distance that Bono could only wave at before the ball nestled into the lower corner.
Toronto defender Hagglund scored a consolation just before the final whistle, volleying home a chipped Sebastian Giovinco free kick at the back post.
The result comes on the back of numerous O'Connor changes to his starting lineup in an attempt to kickstart the struggling home side – namely the benching of starting goalkeeper Joe Bendik and former All-Star winger Justin Meram.
- THE BIG PICTURE: If either team wanted to revive their fading MLS Cup Playoff hopes, they needed to make a statement against their struggling opponents. And Orlando, losers of nine straight coming into the match, stepped up. The hope will be that O'Connor has breathed life into the woefully underperforming Lions, but only time will tell.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Dwyer, whose long range effort was spilled by Bono in the first half leading to Schuler's opener, scored a screamer just after the restart to give the Lions a two-goal lead.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Yoshi Yotun was the motor in the midfield, sporting a wonderful combination of creativity and brawn, but Dwyer has to get the nod with his "assist" on the opener and his screamer in the second half. The naturalized American now has eight goals on the year and if Orlando have any plans to turn one win into two, Dwyer will need to continue to show his class in front of net.