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?
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?
This is the first entry in an ongoing series following up with players who were major contributors to Orlando City but did not continue on with the MLS squad. We understand that it is a business, and respect that both teams and players must occasionally part ways. However, since 2011 Orlando City has been more than a team; it’s been a family. Even though these players have moved on, they will always be a part of that.
To kick off our ‘Where Are They Now’ series, I recently had a chance to talk with former Orlando City defender Brad Rusin. One of my personal favorite Lions from 2014, Rusin was acquired from the Vancouver Whitecaps at the beginning of the 2014 season and ended up sixth on the team in minutes played across 23 appearances. He also found the net twice in league play to lead all defenders (tied with Luke Boden).
One of my favorite moments of the 2014 season came in the Aug. 16 match-up against eventual league runners-up Harrisburg. Rusin spent quite a bit of the night chasing around Antoine Hoppenot, now of the Philadelphia Union. The image of the hulking, 6-foot-4 Indiana native chasing the slight, 5-foot-8 Frenchman had me literally laughing in the press box. At one point, the two collided and crashed to the turf. Hoppenot jumped up, obviously angry. He took one look at the player next to him on the ground, quickly changed his tone, and reached out a hand to help Rusin up.
Continue reading Where Are They Now? Catching Up With Orlando City Vet Brad Rusin