Lions fall to Santos Laguna in Leagues Cup quarterfinals

Orlando City SC took part in its first international competition on Thursday night at Exploria Stadium, falling 1-0 to Liga MX side Santos Laguna in the 2021 Leagues Cup Quarterfinals.

Chris Mueller looked to give the Lions a lead less than a minute into the match, but his attempt was cleared off the line by the Santos defense. Goalkeeper Mason Stajduhar made his fourth-consecutive start in between the sticks for the side in all competitions, tallying three saves on the night for a single-game high.

"Obviously frustrated with the result, but not with the way the boys played today and the team. I think they showed a lot of personality tonight, especially in the first half when we created those options," said Head Coach Oscar Pareja. "We could have walked from the game with a different result playing against a good team, but I want to highlight the personality of the players during the whole game. I think it’s a game that is going to make us grow. Obviously, we pursue the results, but at this point, the group showed tonight, against a good rival, that we can play against anyone."

City returns to action in MLS regular season play on Wednesday, Aug. 18, traveling to take on Nashville SC at Nissan Stadium. Kickoff is slated for 8:30 p.m. ET with coverage set to begin at 8 p.m. ET on FOX 35 PLUS.