Orlando City Soccer All Set For Final USLPRO Season

Filed under: Orlando City Soccer,Walt Disney World |

The USLPRO season started last week with a 1-1 draw for Orlando City away at Charleston Battery. Today they face Pittsburgh Riverhounds at a new home venue, the ESPN Wide World of Sports at Walt Disney World.  

The match kicks off at 7.30pm at the facility that will serve as a temporary one-year home for the Lions before the move to Major League Soccer. The stadium has seen some extensive improvements made in order to be able to cram in some 5,500 fans who are expected to watch the evening game. In an effort to produce an intimate and intimidating atmosphere new stands have been brought in along the touchlines and behind the goal posts. 


“We’re delighted to play in-front of our fans this weekend and we’ll be looking to come out of the gate strong,” said Head Coach Adrian Heath on the home-opener. “Pittsburgh is a good side and we know that we have a bigger target on our backs this year, but we’ll be up for it.”

Newly signed Orlando midfielder Austin da Luz looked sharp on his debut last week, recording the team’s first goal of the 2014 campaign.

“The fans that made the trip to Charleston were unbelievable,” da Luz said ahead of Saturday’s matchup with Pittsburgh. “I can’t imagine what the home opener is going to be like. I think it’s going to be a great opportunity for us to get our first win.”

Defender Rob Valentino should be ready to go for the home opener this weekend. Valentino and Rusin looked to be a formidable partnership during the Pro Soccer Classic, as the Lions only conceded two goals in the two games Valentino and Rusin played together.

It won’t be an easy game for the Lions however, during the off-season Pittsburgh added even more attacking firepower to their core line up and they will provide a solid test for the City backline. After resigning lethal Striker Jose Angulo, who recorded 13 goals last season, the Riverhounds also added former Fulham and Chicago Fire Forward Collins John. Pittsburgh’s squad also includes three loanees from MLS affiliate Houston Dynamo.

During the 2013 season the Lions went 1-1-1 against the Riverhounds, but defeated them in the USL PRO quarterfinals en route to City’s third USL PRO Championship.

More stadium photos at www.FloridaLeisurePhotography.com


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