Nashville SC hold off challenge from Orlando City in 2-0 win

Hany Mukhtar and Fafa Picault got Nashville's goals to defeat Orlando.
Morgan Tencza-USA TODAY Sports

Thanks to Fafa Picault's goal in the 28th minute and another by Hany Mukhtar in the 74th, Nashville SC earned a 2-0 win over Orlando City SC Saturday night.

Picault's marker -- his first of the season after eight shots in the initial five contests -- was by way of an assist from Mukhtar on a set piece, while Mukhtar's was from a tricky angle and set up by Shaq Moore.

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The defeat marks the second time in six fixtures that Orlando City (2-2-2, 8 points) didn't produce points in the standings. Along with controlling more possession (64.3 to 35.7 percent), it had more total shots (18) than did Nashville (seven), but couldn't slip one past 34-year-old visiting goalkeeper Joe Willis (six saves).

Orlando City also had eight more corner kicks than their guests (10-2) but could not cash them in. Nashville (3-2-1, 10 points) got back in the win column after consecutive losses to the New England Revolution and FC Cincinnati.

The hosts had the first real chance of the matchup when Mauricio Pereyra's try from the center of the box floated over the net in the 14th minute. In the five minutes that followed, Orlando City had two more strong chances.

Ivan Angulo fired one on target in the 17th minute -- which was saved by Willis -- and Martin Ojeda pushed a shot high and wide on a direct free kick two minutes after that.

After going down, Angulo and Ojeda had consecutive shots blocked in the 39th minute. Both sides had off-target boots in the two minutes of extra time added to the first half.

Willis denied Ojeda again six minutes into the second half and Ramiro Enrique had chances blocked and saved in the 15 minutes that ensued.

Orlando City notched eight shots in the final 45 minutes and change.