The capture of the regular-season Western Conference title remains within reach.
Despite a setback to Minnesota United at home last week, LAFC is no further from another step on the road to the Supporters' Shield and home-field advantage throughout the 2019 Audi MLS Cup playoffs.
Three points are all the separates the Black & Gold from securing the top spot in the West. But a difficult cross-country trip awaits LAFC and a difficult opponent fighting for its own playoff future in Orlando City.
Let's preview LAFC at Orlando City:
LAFC at Orlando City | Sept. 7 at 4:30pm PT
Where To Watch
TV: YouTube TV, KVMD
Radio: ESPNLA 710, KFWB 980
Official LAFC Watch Parties: Joxer Daly's in Culver City & R Bar in Long Beach
James O'Connor's team is four points adrift of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference thanks to a recent spell of bad results. Winless in its last three matches, Orlando City has lost two in a row and has just two wins in its last nine matches. At home this season, Orlando City is 6-7-1.
What The Team Is Saying
Bob Bradley on the challenge Orlando City poses: "Orlando is playing every game like it's their last... James O'Connor has done a good job. They've improved for me. They're a solid team in every way. As always, it's going to be a good test."
Josh Pérez on the team's mindset following a loss: "We never like to lose. Nobody likes to lose. We always look forward and we look to advance. We look to continue and we look for the next thing. Our goals are to win the Supporters' Shield and win trophies."
LAFC Projected Starting XI
(4-3-3): Pablo Sisniega; Steven Beitashour, Tristan Blackmon, Eddie Segura, Jordan Harvey; Latif Blessing, Lee Nguyen, Josh Pérez; Adrien Perez, Adama Diomande, Diego Rossi.
What To Watch For
Rotation: The FIFA window, and MLS not taking a break during it, has hit LAFC pretty hard this week. Seven players are away with their national teams, leaving LAFC a bit short on numbers. It's a challenge Bob Bradley and the team have been embracing this week. Over the course of the season, certain squad players have stepped in when called upon to influence matches. Compared to last year, Bradley has a squad he can confidently go to when positions need to be filled. Expect a different look when it comes to the names and numbers on the back of the jerseys but the same football ideas the team has expressed over the course of the season.
Eyes On The Prize: Securing the Western Conference's top spot remains at the forefront of this team's collective mind. The missed chance to wrap up that spot at home has left a sour taste in the players' mouths. But this season, LAFC has been excellent in its response to losses. The Black & Gold have a 3-0-0 record following a loss in 2019. They are the only MLS side avoid consecutive losses this season and have outscored opponents by a combined 13-5 in the three matches after a loss.
El-Munir Returns To Orlando: Mohamed El-Munir joined LAFC prior to the 2019 season via a trade with Orlando City. The left back took some time to settle into Bob Bradley's system before sustaining a brutal injury against the Galaxy. Through hard work and with the help of the LAFC Performance Staff, El-Munir turned what was feared to be a season-ending injury into an epic comeback. The defender returned to the pitch ahead of schedule in LAFC's 4-0 victory over San Jose last month. El-Munir will be eager to secure all three points against his former team.