Orlando- First home win of the season for the Orlando City Lions came about as forward Luis Nani scored the winning goal in the 89th minute of the match. Former Manchester United winger Nani was granted a penalty kick after a hand ball was called in the box by the Rapids.
He placed the ball perfectly past Rapids goalie Tim Howard and swiftly into the bottom corner of the net that gave the Lions the advantage a 4-3 home win.
“It’s always good to score goals for the team,” Nani said. “It’s always good to help. Obviously, it’s not the most important [thing]. We wanted to win to win for our fans. What they’ve been doing [every week] is fantastic. I never saw that in my life. I’ve been playing for many teams and when the things [are] not going well, everyone knows how the fans normally react. These fans, they are special. I wanted so badly to help the team to win.”
Over 22-thousand loyal fans filled the stadium last Saturday night despite the “Inclement weather.” The lightening overhead did not discourage Lions fans with City leading Colorado 2-1 at the half.
City Head Coach James O’Connor commented after the game “I would say this is the proudest moment I’ve had since I’ve been here, not just because the way the players came back, but you look at the supporters. We got a rain delay, you got lightening and you look around and it feels like all of Orlando is in the stadium. Its incredible, this is a very special futbol club and for us to be able to go and win the game like that we are obviously very very pleased.”
After waiting an hour an one minute from the delay of game,the lions had two mishaps on defense where the Rapids took advantage adding points to the score board 3-2
Former starter Chris Mueller was called upon by the fans and was substituted in the match in the 79th minute. What had seemed like seconds later, his second goal of the season!Assisted by Tesho Akindele and set up by a soft touch from Nani that aloud Mueller to put the ball in between the legs of Rapids goalie Howard for the equalizer in the 81st minute.
When questioned on his thoughts on coming off the bench for Orlando City, Mueller answered; “I think the crowd lifts be up in general, coming in you already have a lot of energy a lot of the guys on the pitch are already tired or fatigued from playing however minutes before you come into the game. So you have that little bit edge to go and give everything you got you know. Put it all to the game and that is what I try to do.”
The Orlando City Lions move to the fifth spot in the Eastern Conference with a record of (2-2-2) with 8 points in week six of the MLS season.
LIONS: On the road to face a match-up against Real Salt Lake next Saturday at 9p.m, back at home on 4/20 against Vancouver.
RAPIDS: Home against the Seattle Sounders Wednesday 4/10 at 9p.m.