Two clubs in search of their first MLS playoff appearance look to keep the momentum going when Orlando City visits Minnesota United on Saturday.
Each side recorded a 1-0 victory on Wednesday, as Orlando City blanked Sporting Kansas City and Minnesota United defeated the Colorado Rapids.
Wednesday's result improved Minnesota's record to 6-1-2 over its last nine MLS matches. For the season, the Loons are 8-1-4 in MLS play on their home pitch.
Despite the three points, Minnesota head coach Adrian Heath wasn't pleased at the narrow margin of victory given that his team generated only one goal from 27 shots.
"As I've said before, I don't fear (for) us in this stadium against anybody. But we'll have to play better than we did tonight to win on Saturday, I know that for sure," Heath said after the Rapids game.
Though Minnesota United (12-8-5, 41 points) sits in second place in the tightly-congested Western Conference, only five points separate the club from eighth-place FC Dallas.
Orlando holds the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference, just beyond the playoff line. A win over Minnesota and a few other helpful results this weekend could put the Lions (9-11-6, 33 points) as high as sixth place in the East standings.
With the notable exception of a 4-1 loss to New England on July 27, Orlando City has allowed one or fewer goals in six of its last seven games. The majority of these defensive performances have come in home games, and defender Shane O'Neill hopes the Lions can carry it forward on the road.
"Just the dedication to kind of getting into our shape, getting into a compact shape not only top to bottom but also from a width standpoint. I think we've been a lot harder to break down," O'Neill said. "(It's) maybe not as exciting to watch, but definitely more pragmatic and it's gotten us results and we're at the cusp and hopefully we can keep pushing it to get over the line."
Cristian Higuita and Ruan are both questionable for Orlando City due to hamstring injuries. Defender Kyle Smith (cut forehead) is also questionable after a collision with Kansas City goalkeeper Tim Melia on Wednesday, which forced Smith out of the game after just 12 minutes.