Our prediction for this MLS match:
All eyes will be on Mercedes-Benz Stadium when Atlanta United and Orlando City go head to head in MLS on Saturday morning. Following four consecutive wins, the Five Stripes suffered a 2-0 loss to Nashville in their last league match. Atlanta United aim to move closer to the playoffs berth, but they face a difficult task in the clash against the Lions. The likes of Adams, Hyndman, Ibarra, Mulraney, and Sosa should miss the game with injuries.
Orlando City, on the other hand, head into the match following a 3-2 win over Columbus Crew. The Lions aim to retain second place in the standings, but given their five-game winless run in the Major League Soccer, we are tempted to put our money on draw. Both Mendez and Pato are out of contention with injuries, but there are no suspended players in the away team.
Highlighted Player (Josef Martinez):
Josef Martinez started his senior career at Caracas, but he made no more than 36 league appearances for the Venezuelan outfit from 2010 to 2012. Martinez then moved to Europe and the 170-cm tall striker scored 4 goals in 34 appearances for the capital club. In the 2013/2014 season he played for fellow Swiss outfit Thun (on loan) and on June 7, 2014 he signed a contract with Serie A team Torino.
In December, 2017 Josef Martinez scored his first ever goal in the Italian top flight in a 2-2 draw with Palermo. The Venezuela international currently plays (on loan) for Atlanta United in MLS and he made his debut for Gerardo Martino’s team against New York Red Bulls. Speaking of his international career, Martinez made his Venezuela debut against El Salvador, coming from the bench after 76 minutes.
On November 10, 2016 he scored a hat-trick for La Vinotinto in a thrilling 5-0 victory over Bolivia and it has to be noted that he has four caps (two goals) for Venezuela U20 team.
Highlighted Team (Orlando City):
Orlando City are a member of the Eastern Conference in Major League Soccer. The Lions have been participating in the major league since 2015 and they host their rivals at Orlando City Stadium. The venue was opened in February, 2017 and the construction of the stadium cost $155 million. Orlando City finished the 2015 MLS season in seventh place in the Eastern Conference and they failed to make it to the play-offs in the 2016 season as well (8th place).
Brazilian ace Kaka is undisputedly the club’s most famous player and the former Real Madrid and Milan man became the highest-paid player in MLS history. His base salary was $6.6 million per year and it has to be noted that the Brazilian superstar found the net on his Orlando City debut against FC Dallas (friendly). Orlando City’s home kit is violet, while they wear white and violet shirts and white socks on the travels. The club’s official mascot is Kingston the Lion.