Rivas Impressions

Notebook: Rivas Impressing; Team Mentality Shift

Coach Kreis Impressed With Carlos Rivas

“Carlos is someday that I think has had a fantastic preseason and he’s primed to contribute in a major way for this club.” That’s what Head Coach Jason Kreis said about Forward Carlos Rivas, a 22-year-old Designated Player who has been with Orlando City since 2015. Rivas scored two goals and earned two assists in the 2017 preseason.

“This is a young player still, and we have the ability to sign young DPs for a reason; to grab these kids before they fully develop and to develop them ourselves into something that fits into our team,” Kreis said. “So, I’m seeing that with Carlos; I’m seeing that it’s taken him a while to transition into the league and to living in a different country.”

“Now, we’re starting to see somebody who’s getting it, who’s understanding what it takes to be successful in this league. And when he gets that, when he wraps his mind around that, and when he’s fully fit and committed, the potential for a player like that is sky high. Absolutely sky high,” Kreis said. “And when he’s at his best, he can be a tremendous handful to a lot of defenses in this league. And so we’re hopeful that he continues on that path. But he’s still not a finished product. And I would say that is symbolic of everyone on this and the team as a whole. We’ve got a lot of potential.” 

Offseason Brings Shift In Orlando City Team Mentality

Kaká emphasized that the mentality of the team needed to shift this year. Playing in a new stadium, but as Kaká noted, that cannot and will not be the team’s lone motivation. They want to play and they want to win to prove that they can be one of the best team’s in MLS. 

“I think players understand and I think players want to have this mentality. Winning games matters,” Kaká said. “And every time we play, whether that’s here or at [Camping World Stadium], we have to win. And that’s what we’re trying to do.” 

That shift involves not just how the players approach winning and losing, but how they approach the offense and the defense. 

“What we are trying to do-- and coach tried to show us this preseason-- is that we are not talking about four players to defend and four or six players to defend,” Kaká said. “We’re talking about an offensive system and a defensive system. 11 players to defend and 11 players to attack.” 

The most important way to emphasize that shift in the team’s mentality? Earn three points on Sunday.

Kaká Focused On Bringing Success To Orlando

When asked about his time in Orlando, Kaká said that he is not focused on next year or the year after that. “I’m thinking about the game we have Sunday,” Kaká said. When asked about a potential shift in mentality, Kaká said this year he wants to focus on taking three points from every game.

“My goal this year is to win games,” Kaká said. “This year I want to win the most games we can.” Kaká noted how close Orlando City was to the playoffs last year, and has said in the past that even a single win could make a huge difference. 

“Now it’s time to win every game,” Kaká said. “We’re gonna start on Sunday.” 

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