Columbus Crew head coach Wilfried Nancy said it’s important for his players to use Saturday night’s loss to Orlando City SC as a constructive learning opportunity to build upon.
Once leading 3-1, the Crew lost, 4-3, after conceding deep into stoppage time. It was the second time the Lions have stunned the Black & Gold late this season, and Nancy hopes it’s the second time this matchup serves as a teaching moment.
“I told them what I needed to tell them, and now, we have to move forward,” Nancy said after the defeat. “They know that this is football. This is the first time that it happened this year this kind of situation. Again, life is for all the people how they are going to react.
“For me, I know that they're going to react because they've trained well, we have good intensity and we have good spirits. Now, this is all this kind of moments when this is difficult that we have to be better and learn from that because this one is really difficult to accept, but this is the situation. We are going to move forward.”
While the match’s conclusion is one to forget, it should be noted there were several brilliant moments for the visitors on Saturday night.
Julian Gressel scored his first Columbus goal in the 16th minute when he was on the receiving end of a nice buildup. As Cucho Hernández chipped the ball toward the back post, the wingback was there to score.
Orlando equalized in the 48th minute, but Diego Rossi gave Columbus its second lead in the 56th with his 50th career MLS goal.
The Crew made it 3-1 in the 68th minute via a precise counter attack down the right flank. After Columbus sliced through the Orlando lines, Alexandru Matan dribbled in on goal before crossing it to Cucho for the Colombian to score his 10th goal of the season and fourth in two games.
City cut the Crew lead to 3-2 five minutes later, though, before producing an equalizer in the 86th. From there, a late set-piece goal seven minutes into stoppage time denied the Black & Gold a point in Orlando.
“We need to be better in the key moments,” Nancy said. “When we look at the goals that we conceded, this is the kind of situation that we have to be better … We need to be better and we need to execute better in the key moments. Again, I respect the fact that Orlando scored four goals, but the way we conceded the four goals, this is poor, this is tough and this is soft. The players, they know that.”
There’s little time to dwell on the defeat as the club plays twice this week, beginning with Wednesday night against rivals Chicago Fire FC at Lower.com Field. Nancy said he’s glad there’s only time to focus on an upcoming opponent instead of pondering the past.
“We are going to move forward,” he said. “I'm happy that we're going to be able to play Wednesday with a quick turnaround. This is the best thing for us. Not only Wednesday but also all the games that are coming because we need to move on. We need to move forward and to be better in terms of this kind of situation.”
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