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Toronto FC aims to get back on track at Orlando City SC


Following a strong start, Toronto FC is intent on finding its form again.

Toronto will look to avoid dropping back-to-back matches for the first time this season on Saturday, when it visits an Orlando City SC side that’s aiming to push its modest unbeaten stretch to three games.

After three consecutive victories to open the season, Toronto (4-2-1, 13 points) is amid a 1-2-1 stretch that included its first home defeat of 2019 – a 2-1 decision last Saturday at the hands of a Portland side that had been off to a slow start.

“It’s early in the season, we’ve got to keep going and we will,” Toronto captain Michael Bradley told the team’s official website. “The important thing is a steady mindset. Make sure we continue to look at all the things that we can improve as the season goes on.”

Toronto is again expected to be minus star forward and leading goal-scorer Jozy Altidore, who is dealing with a hamstring issue. Meanwhile, budding MLS star Alejandro Pozuelo had four goals and five assists in his first four league contests before being held without a point against Portland.

Orlando (3-3-3, 12 points) failed to earn a victory in its first three matches of 2019 but is 3-2-1 since. It has totaled four points over the last two games and will look for a third consecutive home victory on Saturday.

“We’re focused on Toronto,” coach James O’Connor told the team’s official website. “We feel as if the training has been really good. When you look at the performances, we’ve been pleased overall with the performances … We’re serious about what we’re trying to do here. We’re desperate to be successful this season.”

Orlando midfielder Nani has enjoyed some recent success with all five of his league goals coming in the last four contests. He gave Orlando the lead in the 18th minute at New York City FC last weekend, but the hosts equalized in the 51st and the match finished in a 1-1 draw.

Toronto and Orlando split the two 2018 meetings with each club winning at home.

REUTERS/Field Level Media

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