ORLANDO, Fla. (June 28, 2016) – Orlando City SC has signed midfielder Tony Rocha from Orlando City B (OCB), the Club’s United Soccer League (USL) affiliate, to a Short Term Agreement ahead of its U.S. Open Cup Round of 16 match against the Fort Lauderdale Strikers on June 29. Rocha will be on a four-day contract and will continue with OCB following the match.
MLS clubs may sign players from their USL affiliates to Short Term Agreements (up to four-day contracts) for CONCACAF Champions League, AMWAY Canadian Championship, U.S. Open Cup and exhibition matches. An MLS club may sign a player to a maximum of four short-term agreements each season (maximum of 16 days).
Rocha joins the MLS side for the second time in this year’s U.S. Open Cup campaign, after being called up for Orlando City’s fourth-round match against the Jacksonville Armada and playing the second half. The 22-year-old has become a fixture in head coach Anthony Pulis’ midfield and has two assists and 10 shots in 14 games.
Orlando City advanced to the Round of 16 after its 1-0 win over the Jacksonville Armada on June 15. Center back David Mateos scored in the 62nd minute after Júlio Baptista headed Antonio Nocerino’s corner service to the Spaniard for his first goal with the Lions.
Fort Lauderdale, of the North American Soccer League (NASL), defeated MLS side D.C. United 4-3 in a penalty kick shootout following a 0-0 draw. Orlando City defeated the Strikers 2-0 in a preseason friendly, riding goals from Hadji Barry and Pedro Ribeiro.
Orlando City is 11-5 all-time in the U.S. Open Cup and has never lost to a non-MLS team in the nation’s oldest soccer tournament.
Tickets for the Round of 16 matchup are available here.