All posts by johnathanrey

Where Does Tommy Redding Fit in 2015?

At 17 years old, Tommy Redding is currently the youngest player on Orlando City’s youthful roster. Along with fellow Lion, Tyler Turner, the 6-foot-2 center back is among the elite players coming through the U.S. youth ranks.

Redding is certainly dubbed a prospect for the future, but don’t be fooled, the defender exceeded all expectations in the USL Pro last year. Redding made 15 appearances in his debut season for Orlando, and has put himself in a great position in the lead-up to the MLS season.

Redding’s fine play has been awarded with an MLS contract, which made him the club’s first ever homegrown player. Adrian Heath has been pleased with his young defender’s development and has since showered him with praise following their 2014 USL Pro season. Continue reading Where Does Tommy Redding Fit in 2015?

MLS Playoff Weekend: Exploring the Conference Finals

After a thrilling weekend, the final two teams in the race to the MLS Cup have been decided. This Sunday the LA Galaxy will play host to the New England Revolution in a game that will crown the new MLS Cup champion and conclude the 2014 season.

Fortunately for Major League Soccer (and all us writers), this past weekend has been full of compelling storylines and captivating narratives that we all get to talk about. It has also set the stage for an exciting final, chock full of stories of its own to explore.

For me, this has been one of the most entertaining playoff races in quite some time and, as a neutral, I found myself discovering more and more reasons to pull for each of the four teams. Although two of the four teams have been eliminated, there are still plenty of questions left to be answered and many story arcs left to be resolved. Here are some of my favorite talking points that have developed from these Conference Finals.  Continue reading MLS Playoff Weekend: Exploring the Conference Finals

Don’t have an MLS team yet? Why not Orlando City?

This summer’s World Cup has undoubtably recruited a great deal of new Americans to the sport of soccer, many of which do not have a team to call their own. An abundance of these soccer hungry fans were recruited by the USMNT’s dramatic tournament, so they have an understandable interest in our domestic league. Those fortunate enough to live in a city or state with an MLS team have an easy decision on who to support and can make the natural choice of their local club.

What about those who aren’t so lucky?

These poor unfortunate souls are left with no team at which to aim their newly discovered passion, no group to get behind, and no real reason to continue following each week. After all, isn’t the point of sports to get emotionally invested, bleed your team’s colors, and support your club through thick and thin? Continue reading Don’t have an MLS team yet? Why not Orlando City?

What’s Wrong With the USMNT?

A new World Cup cycle is upon us and the USMNT has begun with a resounding sputter. They have recorded a disappointing 1-2-2 record, the sole win coming from an away game against the Czech Republic.

Ironically, the lone victory was secured by an experimental group of youngsters and not from a tested contingent of veterans. In the remaining four fixtures, the U.S. consistently underwhelmed and lacked cohesion.

Many obvious trends have surfaced for Jurgen Klinsmann’s team, causing fans and social media to dish out blame and point fingers. Yes, the team is failing to hold on to leads, and of course they are giving the ball away too easily. The list goes on and on with an array of difficulties the U.S. is experiencing on the field. Continue reading What’s Wrong With the USMNT?

Orlando City: The Week That Was

We are still months away from MLS play, however that certainly is not keeping Orlando City quiet in the offseason. While much of the focus has been on the international break and the USMNT, the past week has seen an array of activity for the club and it’s players.

Kevin Molino Thrives with Soca Warriors

The Orlando star had an impressive week while on international duty with Trinidad & Tobago, who are in the midst of the Caribbean Cup. Hitting the back of the net three times in as many games, Molino has led his country to the cup final and a berth in the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup. A win in Tuesday’s final against host Jamaica will also clinch a spot in the 2016 Copa America. Continue reading Orlando City: The Week That Was

Player Spotlight: Kevin Molino

Excitement continues to surround Orlando City SC in the buildup to the 2015 MLS season, and one player in particular has been a focal point of that excitement. The Lions’ first Major League Soccer signing, Kevin Molino, is an impressive talent that has become a top-performer for club and country.

The 24-year-old midfielder has been a member of Orlando City since its conception in 2011 after transferring from the Trinidad and Tobago Pro League club Ma Pau Sports Club. Molino immediately slotted into Adrian Heath’s side where he has developed into a key figure for  the Lions.

Over his four-year stint with Orlando, the Trinidadian footballer has helped bring two USL Pro championships and three Commissioner’s Cups to the Florida club. Along with club glory, Molino has been showered with individual awards, including two USL Pro MVP awards in—the first in 2012, and again in 2014. Continue reading Player Spotlight: Kevin Molino

Which American Should Orlando Target This January?

Times have been rough for Americans playing in Europe over the past couple of months. Many have been relegated to cameo appearances off the bench, while others are lucky to make the gameday 18. With uncertainty looming its ugly head, rumors have begun to circulate that several of these yanks may be moving clubs during the January transfer window.

Orlando City already has a strong presence in foreign markets, thanks to a diverse international representation from the current players on the roster. Kaká will bring in a strong Brazilian audience, while Adrian Heath and our two SL Benfica signings should attract attention from the English and Portuguese markets respectively. However, Orlando currently lacks a face to draw interest from the American fans.

With so many yanks likely to be on the move, Orlando City SC should seriously consider moving for one of these unsettled players. Admittedly, several of these players are unrealistic options for the Purple and White, nonetheless, there may just be a future Lion in this mix of Americans. Continue reading Which American Should Orlando Target This January?