On this week's Orlando City Coach's Show with Adrian Heath, the Lions' head coach discussed Friday night's win over New York City FC, the new USL and NWSL teams, looks forward to the Philadelphia Union, and other aspects of Orlando City SC.
Orlando City Alumni Association
"I'm very thankful for what those who came before us did."
"I thought it was only a matter of time before we were going to score, even when we went one down."
"I know Jason Kreis thought they had an incredible expansion draft. In hindsight I think we proved that we certainly did a better job than them at the beginning of the season."
"It was important that we started quickly and we did."
"The right back, who they switched from the left back wing, could never really come to terms with Carlos Rivas all night. Higuita and Ceren in the middle of the park had too much energy for Lampard and Jacobson."
"I thought it was an excellent performance. No more than we deserved."
"The easy thing is to get panicky and go ‘Well, let's change it to 4-4-2 and change the shape of the team and change the system and get another forward on.' But sometimes that actually has an adverse effect and you actually lose the momentum of what you're doing well. I felt that if we had gone to a 4-4-2, the same as them, it would've evened us out a little bit. It would've been two against two in the middle of the park rather than the way that we were playing. We were always getting our spare man on the ball. We were getting the ball out to Rivas. We were getting balls in the box. So I was very reluctant to change it as early as probably people thought."
Cyle Larin's Improvement
"We've worked really, really hard with him. But if the individual himself doesn't want to work hard, doesn't want to take the information on, doesn't want to be immersed with everything that you're trying to do with him, and having the brain to take the information on and then implement it in a game. I've had players where I've spent more time than I've spent with Cyle who the penny doesn't drop. They don't take the information on. They can't put it all together in a game. If you show them on the video they go, ‘Yeah, I should've done this.' But in the heat of the battle and in that split second, that split moment it doesn't register, they can't work it all out quick enough. But Cyle is a smart kid. He's still growing. He's still going to get bigger and stronger. Physically his body is still nowhere near where it should be. He's still very soft. And by that I mean if you look at some of our guys and you take their top off, they're in great physical condition. Cyle's still like a young kid. There's still some puppy fat there and his body's not in good shape. But when all that comes together and, God willing, he stays injury free and keeps listening and learning and working hard, the sky's the limit for the kid."
"We don't have to hide behind the fact that New York and L.A. and that side of the country, they get their fair share of publicity shall we say. And the fact that we have a guy that was on standby for Colombia's national team, which is ranked third in the world, and he doesn't get in the top 24 players under 24 in the MLS, I find that quite strange."
Orlando City B Announcement
"I would love for us all to be called Orlando City. I would love for us all to have the same badge."
"I would love for us all to be under the same umbrella with the same name and same badge."
"It's another piece in the development of having a proper football club from top to bottom. And I know it's going to be a huge boost for the game and it'll be another piece we can use in the new stadium when it's built."
Strategy for Making Up Goal Differential
"Firstly we have to try to win the game. And if at one stage it's two or three to nil and you're doing well, I'm sure that we'll be told what the score line is coming in from New York."
"If you put our starting 11 up against theirs, we're the youngest in the league by three years."
"Well we've had a good run and I think we need to finish it off. We had a horrible July and August. There's no getting away from it. And it cost us dearly. We've ended up running out of games. But we've played the most minutes of any team in the history of the MLS a man down so that's certainly something that we're going to have to address next year."
Finishing Ahead of NYCFC
"It gives me a lot of satisfaction because if you had seen the day we went into the MLS offices the first day, we came in and nobody looked at us and then they come in to a standing ovation from everybody and I thought, ‘Okay, I wonder where your alliances are from the league.' So it's pretty nice to be seven points ahead of them. Let's hope we can make it ten."
Keeping Players from Internationals
"We can say to Jurgen, ‘Listen, we don't think that Brek is ready for another 90 minutes. We'd prefer to keep him here rather than play him on the Saturday and then you're going to play him on the Wednesday and then he's going to travel to wherever for CONCACAF or whatever it is and then fly back Friday and play for us Saturday.' Ultimately it's down to the coach and if Jurgen says, ‘Tough. We need him. We want him.' There's nothing we can do."
Using Orlando City B
"The younger ones who are not playing and some of the first team guys, like this year Bryan Rochez has played nowhere near enough football. There were occasions where he could've gone and played for the USL team if they're playing on a Sunday or playing on Tuesday when we're not playing until the following Saturday. And that's going to the beauty, for them to get some minutes."
Use of USL Team from MLS Perspective
"It will enable us to give some of the younger guys games. That's basically it. They will have to be on the MLS roster to be able to go backwards and forwards. The players that will be on the USL roster will be USL players."
"The one thing it does for those young guys, for a lot of the ones we bring in, we will see them nearly every day. They have an opportunity to impress us and try to work their way onto the full team roster. But it will be players on the first team roster that will be able to go up and down, not just from the second team."
Last Game Approach
"It's the last game of the season. It's their last home game of the season. It's the last chance for some of them to make an impression on them. There's a lot of change going on in Philly at the moment. Obviously their GM left and there's questions about the coach. It's going to be a bit more difficult than people think but we're just going to go in there with the confidence that we gained from five wins on the bounce. We've got too much at stake to coast through this game. I want to win this game badly."
"Brek's looking so good at this moment in time in training. It looks like he's suddenly peaking just as the season's ending after his injury. But he's looked really good at training."
Message to Team
"Every time that we put that shirt on, we have to go out to win. And that's no different. We represent the club. We represent the city. We represent our supporters who never let us down. We've got an awful lot of obligations out there and I think we've got too much at stake. We want to finish with one of the best records ever in expansion. We want to get the most wins ever in the first year."