On a crisp, sunny morning, the men of Orlando City are hard at work preparing for the preseason. It looks more like a mid-season practice than the first week of training. Everyone seems to be clicking. They’re leaving it all out on the field.
Coach Adrian Heath is particularly impressed with the performance of rookie midfielder Richie Laryea, who was the 7th overall pick in the MLS SuperDraft. “I saw a lot of Kevin Molino in him,” Heath said after training.
That’s high praise for the new midfielder. Kevin Molino is a star player for Orlando City, who is coming back after missing most of last season with a torn ACL. “Kevin Molino has been the best footballer we’ve had for the last three or four years,” Heath said. “He was a big loss for us last year.”
That’s quite a weight to put on the shoulders of the young midfielder, but Heath doesn’t think it’s too much. “That’s the way he plays,” Heath said, smiling. “I wasn’t the only one who thought there was a bit of Molino to him when he joined us.”
One thing is for sure: at the end of the first week, Heath feels good about his team. “We’re a lot further down the road,” Heath said. “Everyone’s coming in flying.”