NYRB II Preview: RBII Take Perfect Road Record to Orlando

IMAGE, MATT KREMKAU FOR EMPIRE OF SOCCER

by ANTHONY J. MERCED

New York Red Bull II close out week 13 in the USL by putting their perfect road record on the line against a surging Orlando City B. New York, considered by many to be the best team in the USL, still trails first place by just one point with a game in hand adding to the importance of a result on Sunday night.

Orlando City B is no slouch in the Eastern Conference. The first year team stumbled out of the gate but has grabbed three of their last four games and have an ability to play up to their competition. New York will have to be weary of Orlando’s offense as they’ve netted multiple goals in each of their last five games. Along those same lines Orlando has conceded in all of those fixtures making them vulnerable to an opportunistic New York side.


STARTING XI:

New York Red Bull II: Meara; Plewa, Carroll, M’Baye, Long; Williams, Metzger, Flemmings, Etienne Jr.; Bonomo, Allen

Orlando City B: Ridgers; Ambrose, Nitti, D. Garcia, Donovan; Rocha, Ribeiro, Da Silva, Neal, Laryea, Cox

Players to Watch: Konrad Plewa has slowly found a home at right back with NYRB II and become a key cog in the effort to possess the ball which New York has done so well. Plewa has played in ten games and continued his growth from last season where he found himself all over the field. Now, it seems that he’s found his comfort zone and John Wolyniec is playing him consistently as a wing back. Plewa has no goals this season but his contribution is key part to what New York has done, especially on the road in 2016.

X-Factor: Momentum is key for both sides. New York has a pristine road record with five wins and no losses. Orlando City B has won three of four and finally seemed to find a playing style that best suits them. Which team’s momentum will carry them through remains to be scene but both will certainly have confidence and play with the belief that they can take all three points.


It is impossible to talk about New York Red Bull II this year without talking about their fantastic defense. New York has only allowed six goals all season and racked up four consecutive clean sheets. All of this with a fluctuating backline that has seen academy and MLS talent take up key positions. It is a testament to John Wolyniec’s training and the overall team’s integration with the MLS side that has them playing at such a high level.

Orlando City B will have a few situations not in their favor. Defender Tyler Turner will not be available for this game after yellow card accumulation. Turner has been a key player for them and scored three goals this season, tied for second on the team. Still, Orlando is more than dangerous on set pieces and can shouldn’t be taken too lightly.

Beyond the stats is the fact that New York is still just one point shy of Louisville City FC for first place in the East. Louisville will be playing first and may continue to set the pace with New York needing to match. Should Louisville stumble, New York’s game in hand may be the deciding factor as they can move ahead and solidify first place this season.