Sliding Orlando City braces for Impact (Jun 17, 2017)

BY AP • June 16, 2017

The Montreal Impact are on the rise while Orlando City SC is trying to figure out how to put the brakes on a recent skid.

Two teams heading in opposite directions will meet on Saturday as they resume Major League Soccer play at 7:30 p.m. at Orlando City Stadium.

Montreal (4-4-5, 17 points) has collected 10 points in five games since a 1-0 victory on May 6 at D.C. United.

Orlando (7-5-3, 24 points) has one win in its last eight league games and sustained a 3-1 loss to Miami FC in U.S. Open Cup play on Wednesday, a rarity for a MLS team so early in the tournament.

Moreover, the team will be without forward Cyle Larin, who is sidelined after a Thursday arrest by the Florida Highway Patrol for allegedly driving while intoxicated.

Larin had a team-high eight goals -- including five game-winning tallies -- in 15 starts but is ineligible to play for the foreseeable future. The next four Orlando players have a combined seven goals.

"Larin will not be eligible to participate in any competition or team activity," Major League Soccer said in a statement this week. "Until that assessment is complete, he is cleared for participation by the SABH (Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health) Program doctors, and Major League Soccer completes its investigation. Major League Soccer will remain in close communication with the Orlando City SC, local law enforcement, and the MLS Players Union during this investigation."

Orlando will also be without midfielder Antonio Nocerino, who is serving a red card suspension.

The hosts started the season 6-1 but are 1-4 with three ties over its last eight games.

Montreal is playing better in recent weeks, going 3-1 with a tie since early May.

"I think in the last five games we've done very, very well," Impact midfielder Blerim Dzemaili said. "It's not much (in the standings), but we can always do better and I think we have to do better."

But the Impact aren't immune from personnel woes.

Midfielder Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla was injured in warmups prior to last week's 1-1 tie with Kansas City.

Left back Ambroise Oyongo is out for the season after suffering a knee injury while on recent international duty with Cameroon. He has already had surgery to repair a ruptured patella tendon in his right knee.

Montreal will also miss Chris Duvall, who is serving a red card suspension.

Orlando has a 3-2 series lead (with one tie) in six all-time meetings. Montreal won the most recent match, a 1-0 result last October in Florida.


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