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Lion Links: 3/21/17

Cyle Larin’s stock is rising, Alex Morgan nets brace, Orlando Pride look to #FillTheBowl, and more!

MLS: Philadelphia Union at Orlando City SC Matt Stamey-USA TODAY Sports

Greetings, Mane Landers, and happy Tuesday. Hopefully you are still basking in the glow of the past weekend’s victory. We will have to hold on to that memory for a couple weeks. But if you just have to have your soccer, don’t worry because Orlando City B opens its season in Tampa this weekend. Now, on to the Lion links.

Cyle Larin’s Stock Rising

Orlando City’s hot start to the season has the media talking about Cyle Larin. Three goals and six points for the team in two games will do that. Larin has established his name far and wide with his goal scoring. But FourFourTwo’s Scott French explored how Larin continues to evolve into more of a complete player. The improvements needed to his game from here on are subtler, so the hard work has been done. The question was asked whether Larin is already the best striker from North America over Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, which says a lot. But the fact that he still has room for improvement says even more.

Alex Morgan Scores a Brace for Lyonnais

Alex Morgan scored two goals for Olympique Lyonnais in a 5-0 victory over ASPTT Albi. This was the match before her squad faces Wolfsburg in UEFA Champions League quarterfinal action on March 23. Morgan came on as a substitute and scored in the 67th and 68th minutes.

#FillTheBowl for Orlando Pride Opener

Before the Orlando City 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Union, the Orlando Pride announced that they will be bringing back the #FillTheBowl tradition for their home opener on April 23. Their goal is to break their own single-game attendance record of 23,403. Last year was the inaugural season so there was a newness factor, but it would make quite a statement to set the attendance record again. Especially considering the face of the franchise, Alex Morgan, isn’t playing.

Orlando City Enjoying the Advantages of Owning USL team

Paul Tenorio of FourFourTwo broke down an advantage of an MLS team owning a USL team that many casual fans may not have realized. The advantage at this time is that USL teams are entitled the three additional USL Priority Players; therefore, an MLS team that owns a USL team has an opportunity to control additional young talent. Typically, this designation is reserved for international players because Homegrown designation is more lucrative for the player. The bigger story is that MLS is trying to change the dynamic of the league. Instead of getting the player when their star is fading, they are trying to find the player whose star is about to rise.

Lions Again Feature in MLS Team of the Week

Orlando City was well represented again on the Week 3 edition of MLS Team of the Week. Cyle Larin and Jonathan Spector find themselves in the starting XI, while Joe Bendik made it onto the bench. Congratulations to our Lions, who continue to garner accolades in the early season.

That’s it for today’s edition of Lion Links, I hope you enjoyed it. Until next time.