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Orlando City Midseason Report Cards: Midfielders and Forwards

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After seeing how the defenders and goalkeepers graded out earlier in the week, how did the strikers and midfielders fare through the first half of the season?

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier this week, we took a look at the goalkeepers' and the defenders' performance in the first half of the season, grading Aurelien Collin out as the top player of the group. Who will receive that designation between the midfielders and strikers?


MF/LB Brek Shea - B- - Brek Shea started the season at left back, only moving into his more familiar role on a regular basis when injuries depleted the midfield. His slide up allowed Luke Boden into the starting XI at fullback, forming The Killer Bees tandem that has been wreaking havoc on the left side ever since.

Stellar in the offensive build and a nuisance on defense, Shea has made his impact known all over the pitch until his last appearance, which was cut short in the first half due to an aggravated groin injury.

His most memorable highlight has to be the save in week five against D.C. United, which earned Save of the Week honors from every soccer publication in the Milky Way galaxy.

MF Carlos Rivas - B- - Rivas likely saved himself from a "C" grade with his golazo against Columbus on Tuesday, a goal so sweet my voice is still recovering from absolutely losing my mind.

Rivas' speed has made the young Designated Player an intriguing enigma throughout the early stages of the season, though it seems his talent is really starting to come together on the pitch, and the club is reaping the benefits.

MF Tony Cascio - Incomplete - The former University of Connecticut Husky and longtime MLSer has yet to see the pitch in MLS action this year.

MF Darwin Ceren - B+ - The El Salvador captain has been outstanding for the Lions this season, especially since the calendar turned to May. The team leader in tackles per game has also proven to be a deft passer, sporting an 88% completion rate, good enough for second on the team.

MF Cristian Higuita - B - Higuita has grown to form an intimidating duo with Cerén, as the two are the only players averaging over three tackles per game. While he trails Cerén in tackles per game, his passing rate of 89% is good for second in Major League Soccer.

When Higuita and Cerén are both in form, City's possession-based style becomes beautiful to watch. The former Deportivo Cali man has shown an upside that has the fan base excited for what the second half will bring.

MF Eric Avila - C - When Kevin Molino injured his knee, a huge question mark formed on the right side of the pitch. Avila hasn't wowed anybody, but has done a solid job attempting to fill the shoes. A smart player with a V6 motor, he does a solid job taking care of the ball and is yet another player passing at above 80%.

MF Harrison Heath - Incomplete - "Inchy Junior" has seen 91 minutes of MLS action so far, showing a high motor and an eager confidence that shows he's not shy under the bright lights in front of 30,000 demanding pairs of eyes.

MF Pedro Ribeiro - B - If hustle plays were a statistic, Pedro would lead the league. From creating an own goal in Houston to the Two-Minute Miracle in Montreal, Ribeiro has proven to be nothing if not dynamic. While he seems to have sandbags tied to his boots when he's getting up and down the pitch, it isn't for lack of effort. One of the hardest workers on the pitch, he's physical and knows how to use his body to keep the ball alive. It was while he was battling three defenders that the ball was freed up for Rivas' goal against the Columbus Crew in U.S. Open Cup play.

MF Amobi Okugo - D+ - A strong start to the year had many excited about what the former Pac-10 Player of the Year was bringing to the club. After a few poor performances, Okugo lost his spot to the surging Higuita. With proven talent at this level, we all look forward to Okugo putting it all together again on the pitch.

MF Lewis Neal - C+ - After earning the nickname of "most boring player" on the team, Neal showed an unexpected poise in the defensive midfield slot, putting forth a clinic in the club's 1-0 win over D.C. United. Strong on the ball with very good vision, Neal is a veteran midfielder who can be trusted in a pinch to provide stability to the lineup.

MF Estrela - N/A - The young midfielder from Benfica has yet to see the pitch this season. A plus athlete and just 19 years old, there's a lot of soccer in Estrela's future.

MF Kevin Molino - B- - #MolinoMania was beginning to run wild earlier this season, as Kevin and Kaká were pairing up really well on the right side and developing a chemistry that had fans euphoric as we watched our longtime star link up with one of the world's best. A devastating knee injury in a friendly against Ponte Preta ended his season abruptly, but we all remember Molino and his importance to this club, especially our next subject.

MF Kaká - A - What a fantastic season the former Ballon d'Or winner is having here in Orlando. With eight goals and two assists to his name, there truly is no question who this offense runs through. While we've seen him hold the ball a tad too long on occasion, he's made up for it with his composure from the spot and his deft finishing touch.

Also, the classiest celebration around came from the man with the armband, donning teammate Kevin Molino's shirt in honor of his fallen comrade after scoring against LA.

ST Cyle Larin - B+ - Kid Fantastic answered one of the most troubling questions that arose from the opening weeks of the season: "Just how in the hell is Orlando City going to score goals?!" The No. 1 draft pick and sensational rookie has found the back of the net six times in MLS competition, inching closer and closer to the league record of 11 rookie goals.

ST Martin Paterson - Incomplete - The veteran was brought in from England's second tier to be an experienced option up front, but injuries have kept him off the pitch for much of the year. With just 37 minutes to claim, we can't give Marty Pato a fair grade.

ST Bryan Róchez - Incomplete - Surely, the most enigmatic Designated Player in the league. Between fitness questions and relocation issues, we've seen Róchez on the pitch for just 80 minutes of league action.

ST Danny Mwanga - Incomplete - Another forward with just 80 minutes to claim, Mwanga has been passed over for opportunities, instead watching Pedro Ribeiro play out of position up top.