With fresh legs and fresh minds, Orlando City is ramping up for its return to the pitch after what will have been a two-and-a-half week break. The Lions will travel to Jacksonville to take on the Armada in a U.S. Open Cup fourth round match-up.
Players had an entire week off to get much-needed rest after a condensed schedule of three games in a span of nine days. On Monday, they returned to training to prepare for the Open Cup match and back-to-back home fixtures when MLS league play resumes.
Orlando has suffered a rash of injuries of late, and this is much-needed time to replenish the roster. Defender Brek Shea recognized the importance of this time in getting players healthy.
“I think we had a few injuries and people who were just kind of beat up from the first couple games. This time is good to get fit or work on things you need to work on.”
Asked how the break could help Orlando City going forward, Shea said, “Last week, we had three games and I think we built on each game. Hopefully, [using the break] we can build on those.”
Coach Adrian Heath told reporters that the break will allow the team to have training time ahead of playing a hungry USL team in the Armada, saying, “We’ll be gradually ramping the training up as we go through the week in preparation for the Jacksonville game.”
Orlando City takes on Jacksonville Wednesday, June 15, and returns to MLS play at home on Saturday, June 18, against the San Jose Earthquakes.