Lion Links

Lion Links: 2/21/17



Good Morning, Mane Landers! Just over two weeks to go! That’s right, the emotions are starting to rise daily. The final preparations are being set, so buckle up, it will be one for the history books. This Tuesday brings us a day closer to match day, and we’ll get it revved up with a batch of links.

Lions Disappointed by Scrimmage Results

Orlando City took on Toronto FC over the weekend for a pair of 90-minute scrimmages here in Central Florida, and Lions Head Coach Jason Kreis — to say the least — was not pleased at two losses for his side.

“Obviously, gravely disappointed with the results,” Kreis said. “No reason to try to hide from that. But, if we try to dissect it a little more cleanly . . . it was about the first five minutes and the last five minutes.

All three of Toronto’s goals came in the early going and the closing minutes, hence Kreis’ displeasure. The Lions did come out in a 4-4-2, as Kreis prefers, with Carlos Rivas paired up top with Cyle Larin, perhaps providing a hint at who will complement the Canadian up top. For now, though, that’s the point of the preseason: To work out the kinks in games that ultimately don’t matter otherwise.

Orlando City to Cut Stadium Ribbon on Friday

We’ve all been anticipating the March 5 MLS opener against NYCFC for some time now, but the Lions’ new stadium will officially open this Friday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Per WKMG, there is still some work being done that may not be finished by Friday’s ceremony, but all of the work in progress is just “finishing touches” and will be completed before NYC comes to town.

Catley Close to Re-signing with the Pride

Australian defender Steph Catley is close to an extension agreement that will confirm her as an Orlando Pride Player, according to Tom Sermanni, via Women’s Soccer Weekly.

The left back scored the first goal in club history last year and played 11 matches before going down with a foot injury playing in the Rio Olympics. She’ll look to come back strong in 2017 as, according to this news, a committed Pride player.

Toronto FC Signs Victor Vazquez

Toronto FC have made another signing that makes it clear they intend to remain in contention and reach their ultimate goal of becoming champions: the signing of midfielder Victor Vazquez. The Spaniard has had the privilege of playing under Pep Guardiola as part of his Barcelona dream team before moving to Belguim to play for Club Brugge. Most recently, he played in Liga MX, and this guy represents a signing who sends a message to the rest of the league: Toronto is here to win.

MLS Needs to Catch Up

Major League Soccer has seen a rapid expansion in teams and fan base throughout the country. But is that enough in the most global sport of the world? MLS seems to do an amazing job at bringing international talent to the league, but as players’ prices seem to be inflating, locally it’s time to start exporting some of our talent. FourFourTwo makes a compelling case that developing talent that goes on to succeed in bigger leagues is a great way for MLS to continue its growth. One such player who has been the subject of rumors and will continue to be until he eventually lands in a bigger league? Orlando City’s Cyle Larin.

San Diego Reveals Stadium Plans for MLS Bid

The group behind San Diego’s MLS expansion bid released a full plan for a stadium site on Monday. Among others, new San Diego local Landon Donovan was present at the event. The next step is to get signatures from San Diego voters to show support.

Well, there you have it, Lions. Some of the best news surrounding our beloved Orlando City SC. I hope you all are on the edge of your seats waiting for the season to kick off. The clocks keeps moving as we get closer to game day. See you next week!


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