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Adrian Winter: Portrait of an Orlando City Play-Maker

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Arriving in June of last year, Adrian Winter has gone from depth player to vital starter in Adrian Heath's first XI.

Derik Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Adrian Winter scored Orlando City's only goal in its 2-1 loss to the Philadelphia Union. He was also voted Man of the Match by you, our readers. This is known. But, how a Swiss midfielder coming off the bench for a mid-table team in the Swiss Super League came to the attention of then-Orlando City General Manager Paul McDonough and played his way into starting lineup alongside former Ballon d'Or winner and Orlando City captain Kaká is harder to grasp.

Adrian Winter made his Orlando City debut against the Philadelphia Union last year in a 0-0 draw, subbing on at the 72-minute mark for Servando Carrasco and quickly combined with Darwin Cerén and Cristian Higuita to try and break the deadlock late in the match. His late efforts in the match led to him being named a starter in the next game vs. the Seattle Sounders and again against Toronto FC. For the rest of the season, in all but three matches, Winter started and against Sporting Kansas City, he notched a brace and earned MLS Team of the Week honors for his efforts. Those goals and an assist on a Cyle Larin goal against NYCFC in October were Winter's only points of 2015.

Heading into 2016, Winter again found his way back to being a super sub, playing off the bench to give Orlando City a boost late in matches. This was evidenced in the 2016 season opener against Real Salt Lake, where his late-game heroics off the bench helped draw the match level and Orlando City would start the season with a similar result to how it began the previous year.

The following week against Chicago, Winter found his way back into Orlando City's starting XI, and it only took five games for Winter to match his 2015 goals total.

His offer against Philadelphia was nominated for MLS Goal of the Week.

Winter's style as an attacking midfielder is something akin to a junk yard dog chasing down intruders in his yard, trying to get to the ball.

Hopefully, Winter's form continues and the intangibles he brings to the the pitch continue to help shape the 2016 season going forward as he continues his rise from little-known Swiss signing to an integral part of this Lions side.