ORLANDO – November 21, 2014 – Orlando City Soccer Club announced today that it has extended head coach Adrian Heath’s contract through the 2017 Major League Soccer (MLS) season, continuing his long-standing journey with the organization. Per Club and league policy, additional terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Heath has been a mainstay with the Club from its very beginning, pursuing a vision shared with Orlando City Founder and President Phil Rawlins of ascending into the highest level of soccer in the United States.
“Adrian has been an integral part of the Club since day one and has been key to our success both on and off the field,” said Rawlins. “His track record with us has been remarkable, and we believe that Adrian as our head coach will provide us the best chance of being competitive in MLS. We’re delighted that we were able to finalize a deal with Adrian that extends his contract for several more years.”
“I’m obviously delighted to be here. When you’ve been here from the very beginning, you don’t want to move somewhere else just as you’re on the brink of going to MLS,” said Heath. “I firmly believed in what we’ve been trying to achieve here. I’m fortunate to sit in a lot of those meetings that outline our plans for the next few years, and I’m incredibly excited about what’s going to be happening here in Orlando.”
Since the Club was founded four years ago, Heath has been at the helm of Orlando City’s success, developing an attractive and entertaining brand of soccer.
During City’s tenure in USL PRO, Heath complied an outstanding number of achievements – including two Coach of the Year awards (2011 & 2012), three Regular Season Championships (2011, 2012 & 2014) and two USL PRO Championships (2011 & 2013).
Additionally, Heath guided the Lions to the best start (66-12-22) of any American professional soccer club during its first 100 league games – solidifying Orlando City’s name in U.S. Soccer’s record books.
Heath also earned national recognition with success against MLS teams in preseason tournaments and the U.S. Open Cup – the oldest soccer tournament in the United States.
Prior to joining Orlando City, Heath had brief coaching spells with English sides Burnley F.C., Sheffield United F.C. and Coventry City F.C.
As a player, Heath spent 18 years in the English and Spanish first divisions – beginning with his hometown Club Stoke City F.C. After scoring 16 times in 95 appearances with the Potters, Heath transferred to Everton F.C. where he underwent the most successful period of his playing career.
In 226 appearances with Everton, Heath found the back of the net 71 times – winning two First Division trophies (1985 & 1987).