|(Photo Credit: Mike Gramajo)|
Orlando City opened up its 2013 campaign losing to Serie A giants AS Roma 5-0, Wednesday afternoon at the Barker Family Stadium in Rollins College.
The Italian side which currently sit sixth in the Serie A table, trained for the past two weeks at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. While the Lions played its first competitive match after crashing out of the USL Pro playoffs, back in August.
"We're delighted for the opportunity to play them (AS Roma)," coach Adrian Heath told reporters after the game. "It was a real learning curve for some of ours."
Roma wasted no time in scoring, Erik Lamela opened up the scoring within the first minute of the game after a one-two touch play with Miralem Pjanic, the Italian side were quick to break Orlando's defense and get the ball passed goal keeper Miguel Gallardo.
Lamela would complete a brace 10 minutes later, resulting into a similar play from the first goal, however, this time assisted by Alessandro Florenzi.
With Dennis Chin playing the role of a lone striker, Chinny wasn't able to capitalize in the scoring third.
Miralem Pjanic would score in the 31st minute after sending a rocket shot past Gallardo, while Mattia Destro would end the first half scoring in an assisted play.
The Lions were able to hold more possession of the ball in the second half, but Roma just kept denying City from scoring, leaving Jerome Mechack to blast a shot from the 18-yard line.
"We're confident in bringing in the necessary pieces to be competitive." said Heath.
Orlando City will continue its preseason when they return to action in the WDW Pro Soccer Classic, playing MLS' Philadelphia in their opening match on February 9.