Story Update: This is about the most horrific news imaginable about Kevin Molino's injury Saturday night in the Ponte Preta friendly:
.@OrlandoCitySC MF Kevin Molino tells me he tore his ACL and will be out for the rest of the season. Had started every game this year.— Christian Bruey (@CBrueyWFTV) May 4, 2015
The club confirmed it in a press release Sunday evening. Molino tore the ACL in his right knee and will miss the remainder of the 2015 MLS season.
"We are obviously devastated for Kevin," said Head Coach Adrian Heath. "He was having a great start to the season, his first in MLS. He'll work with the team physicians from Orlando Health to make sure he undergoes a full recovery and comes back in top form."
The Trinidadian international will undergo surgery on his knee at Orlando Health.
It's a blow to the burgeoning partnership of Kaká and Molino in the Lions' midfield. Although he didn't have his best game against Toronto FC, Molino had shown positive signs in recent games, especially with his run to the end line and assist on Cyle Larin's goal at Portland.
Adrian Heath will have to fill a void in midfield. The positive play by Luke Boden on Saturday night in the friendly might make that decision easier, with a move of Brek Shea to the midfield. We'll have to see.
Original story from Saturday:
About the last thing you want to have happen in a friendly is a major injury to a key player. We don't know the extent of Kevin Molino's apparent leg injury, but he was helped directly to the locker room in the 20th minute of tonight's match against Brazilian Serie A squad Ponte Preta.
Molino sustained contact a few minutes earlier delivering a cross on the offensive end and had to leave the pitch, limping noticeably for a few moments. He came back on and almost immediately suffered a second injury on a hard challenge. This time Adrian Heath subbed off his starting right wing for veteran Eric Avila.
Obviously we don't know much at this time in terms of the severity of the injury, only that it appears to be a leg problem and Molino needed to be helped off.
If Molino misses time it will create issues for Heath's lineup and we'll have to see how the club handles it if and when the necessity arises.
Molino returned to the field on crutches, but was not using them after the game and didn't appear to be wearing a brace of any kind. Adrian Heath said after the game that Molino would be evaluated tomorrow and did not give any specific update.
We'll continue to follow this story as it develops.