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  • Writer's pictureDan Berridge

Analysis: LAFC (h). Can We End The Season Now?

Updated: Jun 23

Seriously? Can we just call it? Like when Kevin says 'call it' during the first aid episode of The Office... Orlando City's season is about as limp and lifeless as that training dummy.


And here's the thing, in terms of our performances this season, this certainly wasn't the worst. There were actually some positive signs.


There were plenty of negative ones too, mind. And they tend to come to the forefront when you're on a collision course with... Nothing. We're going to miss the play-offs. People need to get to grips with that reality.



The positives? We actually looked a bit better going forward, at least in terms of getting into good areas to creat shooting actions.


Finishing wise? Not so much. Of the 19 shots at goal Orlando had only one troubled the gloves of Hugo Lloris in the LAFC goal. The former Spurs stopper could have gotten a cigar and hammock out. Even Facundo Torres' first-half penalty was way off target.


Wasteful.


All that being said, it's not like we played well, well.. Just slightly better than we have been doing. That's not a high bar, by the way.


I still can't figure out what the game plan is. Everything is so disjointed; no one really seems to know what they're doing.


It's almost like they've given up. I saw that in the third goal. The way Denis Bouanga strolled through our defence and rounded Mason Stajduhar was a joke. Laughable. Even though it's not at all funny.



No game plan


It's been a recurring theme with my pieces this season, but what am I meant to be analysing? What's the game plan here? Are we playing on the counter? On the front foot? Possession based? I haven't got a clue, because we're not doing any of them well. Even basic shape and formation is off. No one seems to know where they need to be.



Can anyone, genuinely, hand in heart tell me what Oscar Pareja and this team are trying to achieve? LAFC are flying in the West and are well in contention for silverware. We are so far away from them. It's like chalk and cheese. We're a million miles away from being able to compete with them and anyone that says otherwise needs to check their coffee in the morning. I had a good chat with David from On The Capo Stand in the wake of the game, where I further elaborate on our lack of game plan.





I mean, if you break down the performance last night Orlando had 63% of possession and had a 92% passing accuracy. They spent long swathes of time pretty much camped in the LAFC half; Orlando played a whopping 416 of their 650 passes in the LA half (figure 1). But we did nothing with it. LAFC knew that would be the case and that they would be able to soak up the pressure and pick us off in transition.


And that's exactly what they did. We are so easy to play against. Let us have the ball, because we won't do shit with it.

Figure 1 shows Orlando's (left) passing statistics, whole 90.


Too many players not on their game


Facundo Torres' season went from bad to worse. As did Luis Muriel's... Ivan Angulo's... Cesar Araujo's... I could go on.


A lot of that is down to poor leadership. It's also down to poor performances individually.


That being said, this just isn't a team that's set up to let those players flourish. It's not and you're kidding yourself if you think it is. Anything good they do is in spite of Oscar Pareja's tactics, rather than because of.


The body language of the players tells you they're frustrated. They're no longer pulling for the manager in my opinion.


Top player


Nani

Just because he's an all round cool guy. He looks well and he took the Mickey out of Sacha Kljestan the other day.


Also, I can't bring myself to give it to any of our current players.


Player ratings


Starting XI


Stajduhar -6- Poor.


Þórhallsson -6- Hapless.

Jansson -5- Awful.

Schlegel -4- Even awfuler.

Santos -6- Looked like he gave a crap to be fair.


Araujo -6- Shocking defensively but OK on the ball.

Lodeiro -6- Anonymous at times, but flashes at others.

Torres -6- Won't be going to Europe unless it's on a holiday.

Angulo -6- running down a blind alley a lot of the time.


McGuire -6- Won't be here much longer.

Muriel -6- Yet to get going.


Substitutes


Ojeda -7- Only one to show any quality.

Lynn -6- Nothing to work with.


Orlando City SC Head Coach Oscar Pareja


No more words at this time. [I need] to recognize that we were superior, that we put that energy and outplayed them, but that's not enough obviously. In this industry we need to win games and you win games by scoring goals and that’s not happening. We feel for our fans and the frustration of not winning at home especially, and not being able to complete the games that we should. Now we need to have a deeper analysis about what’s happening on the pitch. But once again, it's not enough at this point. We need to win games and that’s not happening.”




*All statistics courtesy of Fotmob.

Top player image and cover image courtesy of Orlando City SC.

Media availability and b-roll footage courtesy of Orlando City SC.


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