Orlando City wins first U.S. Open Cup final behind leg of Facundo Torres




 

When Orlando City SC completed the transfer of Uruguayan forward Facundo Torres in January, the Lions paid a club-record $7.5 million fee and $1.5 million in bonuses for 100% of his rights.

Torres made the major spending all worth it Wednesday night delivering two goals in the club's biggest win as Orlando City defeated the Sacramento Republic FC 3-0 in the U.S. Open Cup final.

After more than an hour of scoreless soccer, Torres put the Lions in front following a costly turnover by Sacramento in the 75th minute.

Five minutes later, Torres found the back of the net on a penalty kick to give Orlando City breathing room in the final 10 minutes of the match.

Benji Michel, who assisted on Torres' first goal, scored in the 6th minute of stoppage time to give the Lions their third goal of the night.

The win gives Orlando City its first trophy in the club's MLS era and came on the nine-year anniversary of the organization's last title when the Lions won the USL Pro Championship.

The Republic, a USL Championship club, was looking to become the first non-MLS team to win the tournament since 1999.

Orlando City had other plans in front of a sold-out Exploria Stadium.

With the win, the Lions receive a $300,000 prize, a trophy and a spot in the CONCACAF Champions League - an annual continental club tournament in which the Lions have yet to qualify.

Prior to the match, the Lions were under fire after it was reported that the U.S. Soccer Federation is looking into allegations that an Orlando City staffer was spying on a Sacramento Republic training session ahead of the match.

"The Club has been made aware of the matter regarding Sacramento's training session and is cooperating with U.S. Soccer," Orlando City said in a statement.

ESPN's Taylor Twellman was the first to report that the federation was involved.

According to Twellman, a first-team Orlando City employee was spying on Sacramento on Monday and refused to leave for 30-45 minutes after multiple attempts made by the visiting club.

ESPN reported that a federation film crew has footage of the incident.

It's unclear what consequences Orlando City may face until a full investigation is completed by the Open Cup committee at U.S. Soccer.

Email Jason Beede at jbeede@orlandosentinel.com or follow him on Twitter at @therealBeede.

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