Red Bulls (less Royer) home to face Orlando (plus Dwyer)

EAST HARTFORD, CT - JULY 01: Dom Dwyer /

NY Red Bulls look to rebound against powered up Orlando City SC

NY Red Bulls return home this weekend a lot farther behind on the table than when they left. Red Bulls dropped round 2 of the MLS New York derby, 2-3, to NYC FC last Sunday at Yankee Stadium. Above them on the table conference leaders Toronto FC drew at DC United while second place Chicago trounced NE Revolution 4-1 at home. This weekend NYRB are back home in Harrison, NJ to face Orlando City.

The Lions just this week acquired Dillon Powers in an inter-league transfer from Colorado Rapids. Powers, former MLS rookie of the year, changes places with Luis Gil who only came into the league earlier this year, on loan from Querétaro of Mexico’s Liga MX.

Red Bulls too have wandered into the summer marketplace. The club notably passed over a deal for star striker Dom Dwyer, now also with Orlando, earlier this season. But just this past week they loaned out forward Anatole Abang and signed incoming veteran midfielder, Dilly Duka.

Duka’s signing may turn out to have been providential as Red Bulls lost more than 3 points in last weekend’s derby. Midfielder Daniel Royer went down to injury early in that match with what’s now being called bone bruising in the right knee, resulting from hyperextension. He is listed as week-to-week for the foreseeable future. Royer had been at the center of the club’s recent win streak and turnaround on the road.

Will a newcomer be the difference this week and if so, which one?

NY Red Bulls (H)

Jesse Marsch of NYRB (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Jesse Marsch of NYRB (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) /
  • Current Record (W-L-D): 11-9-2
  • Last Time Out: Dropped “Derby Day Part Deux” to “Dashing David Villa” and NYC FC, 2-3.
  • Player to Watch For: Bradley Wright-Phillips scored both goals for Red Bulls last time out. But for a late PK (very much deserved) he and Villa and their respective clubs would’ve drawn at 2. BWP is under the gun again this week with Royer out. The latter had been a large part of the offense since Coach Jesse Marsch reshaped the club on the field. In that regard Marsch’s adjustment this weekend, if any, to the absence of Royer will probably the most important “player” to watch for.
  • Why They Win: Luis Robles has been a big part of the recent success of NYRB. In fact he was a big part of the reason that his club were not completely buried in the Eastern Conference earlier in the year. With any kind of lead to work with—and no blatant fouls late in the game in front of him—and he’s fairly sure to put wins in the win column.
  • Why They Won’t: Marsch not only has to deal with the injury to Royer and the possible introduction of Duka, but his team is facing 2 other matches in the next 7 days. And the coach has to be already thinking about who he will be able to put on the field next Tuesday, Aug. 15, in the Open Cup semifinal with FC Cincinnati.

Orlando City SC

Orlando City Stadium, Orlando, FL
Orlando City Stadium, Orlando, FL /
  • Current Record (W-L-D): 8-9-6
  • Last Time Out: Squandered an early 1-0 lead away to lose, 2-1, to Montreal Impact.
  • Player to Watch For: Just two weeks ago USMNT forward Dom Dwyer rejoined the Orlando club he helped move from USL Pro league to MLS earlier in his career. The Englishman has played in two matches so far for the Lions this time around. He has already shown his value as an assist man having helped teammate Cyle Larin regain his scoring touch in the last match. It wasn’t enough to defeat Montreal, but it’s likely DD is only just getting started. Editor’s note: Late breaking announcement that Dom Dwyer is out for this match due to “minor nose surgery”
  • Why They Win: They don’t much. At least not this season. And very much not on the road. But man-for-man their roster is very capable. Still, they closed the Dwyer deal for an important reason…
  • Why They Won’t: Orlando sport a very poor goal differential. Excepting last place DC United, OC SC’s GD is worse than all of the teams below them on the table. Combined. But they are still a mid-table side with a very legitimate shot at making the playoffs. That means that their goalkeeping is good, but there’s no support on the scoreboard. If the Lions lose it usually starts up front.
  • Score Prediction

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