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Orlando City centerback Amro Tarek back for match against Atlanta United

Colorado Rapids forward Dominique Badji (14) defends as Orlando City SC defender Amro Tarek (3) passes the ball in the second half at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. (Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports)

Orlando City vs. Atlanta United, 6

Where: Orlando City Stadium

Watch: Fox Sports 1

The Buzz: Orlando City (6-2-1, 19 points) put a six match win streak on the line Sunday against Atlanta United. … The Lions are coming off a 3-1 win over Real Salt Lake, the fifth match this season where Orlando City has come back to win or tie a match. … Atlanta United is coming off a 2-0 Wednesday loss to Sporting KC, the Five Stripes’ first loss since their season opener. … Midfielder Miguel Almiron is in MVP form with six goals and five assists. … Atlanta United are tied for first in the league with 23 goals scored. … Orlando City striker Dom Dwyer has six goal in six games. … The Lions have been able to score as well, with multiple goals in each of their last six games. … Defenders Franco Escobar (chest) and Chris McCann (hamstring) are out for Atlanta United, as is goalkeeper Brad Guzan (suspension). … Orlando City centerback Jonathan Spector is out with a concussion. … Centerback Amro Tarek missed the club’s last game with a lower body injury, but participated in training this week and is back in the starting XI.

Players to watch

Miguel Almirón: Sacha Kljestan said Almirón is playing like the best player in the league right now. He’s a dangerous attacking midfielder and will need to be watched at all times

Lamine Sané: A dangerous Atlanta attack means Orlando City’s back four must be sharp. Sané has been solid, but he occasionally gets caught ball watching – that can’t happen against the Five Stripes. Bonus: Amro Tarek missed the last match and will be a key player today. 

Justin Meram: Keep an eye on the winger. He’s mentioned not being too concerned with scoring that first goal, but he’s hungry for it.

Bold predictions

  • Orlando City scores first. The Lions will definitely try to grab some early momentum and won’t want to fall behind early this time
  • Said it last week, more confident this week: Justin Meram gets his first goal today
  • Someone is getting awarded a penalty in this match. It’s a rivalry, and things will get aggressive. 

Cross-exam

Ahead of Orlando City’s rivalry matchup against Atlanta United, Pro Soccer USA’s Orlando City writer, Jordan Culver, traded three questions with Atlanta United writer Mitchell Northam. See the exchange here. 

Note: These questions were traded at the start of the week, before Atlanta lost 2-0 to Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday night.

Lineups

Orlando City: (4-2-3-1, R to L) Bendik; Johnson, Sané, Tarek, El-Munir; Higuita, Yotún; Mueller, Kljestan, Meram, Dwyer

Bench: Edwards, Allen, Schuler, Rosell, Laryea, Colmán, Pinho

Atlanta United: 

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