Richie Laryea spent the beginning of 2017 in the USL with OCB, except for four games when he was an unused sub with the Lions. Then, starting in the end of June, Laryea became a late game bench option for Orlando City Head Coach Jason Kreis for much of the remainder of the season.
The Canadian’s MLS debut came in a 4-0 loss at the Chicago Fire, and, while the team played poorly, Laryea impressed with his work ethic and fight to win every ball. It was a introductory year for Richie, but he still has a long way to go.
Laryea’s 2017 is obviously his best year as a pro, as the midfielder did not play any MLS games in 2016. He played in 12 games with the first team, but the only start was the Lions’ season finale, when Laryea was part of a 6-1 trashing at the hands of the Union. He did not manage to find the net, but he also only took three shots.
He did get on the end of an assist, though, which helped Orlando to a 6-1 win against New England. Laryea’s 87% passing rating is impressive, but his biggest cause for concern is his discipline. He picked up two yellow cards in his 250 MLS minutes, and also another seven yellows in his 12 games with OCB. That is nine yellows in 1,249 minutes, or two yellows every three games. However, with the USL Lions, Laryea also chipped in three goals and two assists in 12 appearances.
The 22-year-old’s best game came when he bagged an assist back in September. His late helper was on Yoshimar Yotun’s goal — a simple ball to Yoshi just past midfield. The Peruvian did most of the work, and Laryea only had to find the open man. Still, it is the Canadian’s only assist and can’t go unnoticed.
Apart from the assist, it was once again his hustle that made Laryea stand out. While Richie’s play was not always perfect this year, something no one can deny is his work rate, and it was on full display in the 19 minutes against New England.
Final 2017 Grade
For someone that did not play much, Laryea got a solid 5 rating from The Mane Land staff. He did well when he was on the field, albeit only managing an average of 20 minutes per game. Combined with the fact that he did not score, Laryea’s 2017 was a step forward in his development, but nothing spectacular.
He excelled in the USL and so he was given a shot in MLS and he took full advantage of it. Laryea was a spark off the bench in 2017, and overall did well with his chances.
Laryea earned a spot moving forward and is still under contract heading into next season. However, he is still not going to be ready to hold a starting spot. He will most likely be a role player for the Lions next season. He will play in games where players need rest or if the roster is slimmed because of injures or international call-ups. He will also be a bench option who will be brought in to help the Lions grab a late goal.
Previous 2017 Player Season in Review Posts (Date Published)
- Kaká (10/25).
- Yoshimar Yotún (10/27).
- Dom Dwyer (10/28).
- Seb Hines (10/30).
- Jonathan Spector (10/31).
- Cristian Higuita (11/1).
- Cyle Larin (11/2).
- Carlos Rivas (11/3).
- Tommy Redding (11/4).
- Jose Aja (11/5).
- Hadji Barry (11/6).
- Joe Bendik (11/6).
- Antonio Nocerino (11/7).
- Servando Carrasco (11/8).
- Rafael Ramos (11/10).
- Léo Pereira (11/11).
- Giles Barnes (11/12).
- PC (11/13).
- Will Johnson (11/16).