Orlando City SC is enjoying its best ever Major League Soccer season start in 2017 as the Lions have amassed six points from their first two matches, defeating New York City FC and the Philadelphia Union. The team displayed solid performances on the field even with the notable absence of captain and Designated Player Kaká, who got injured in the 11th minute of Orlando’s season opener.
The club’s front office worked hard and well during the off-season and the new faces who were brought in are already showing what they are capable of. Even though Orlando has arguably its best roster ever in 2017, it’s never a bad idea to add interesting pieces to it.
As most of the teams have already played three matches (and some even four), it is clear that some players lost space on their current clubs and could become available for the right offer. With the first transfer window closing only on May 8, the Lions have plenty of time to decide whether it’s worthy or not to make a move, but here are some interesting names that could (should?) be on the team’s radar:
Tommy McNamara (New York City FC)
New York City FC added two starting-caliber midfielders in Costa Rican international Rodney Wallace and Argentinean Designated Player Maxi Moralez and that has cost Tommy McNamara his spot in Patrick Vieira’s starting XI. With the new faces thriving — Wallace scored two goals and Moralez has one, plus a couple of assists — it’s easy to understand why McNamara played only for 43 minutes in the club’s first three matches.
With Orlando set to play a 4-4-2, where the attacking midfielders play wide, the 26-year-old McNamara could be a good option behind Kaká, Matias Perez Garcia and Giles Barnes. In 2016, he recorded five goals and nine assists over 29 starts with New York City FC.
Jack McInerney (No Team)
It is no secret that Orlando City needs a backup to Cyle Larin. Hadji Barry is the only option available on the roster so far, but the 24-year-old Guinean has not proven he’s consistent enough after 10 matches with the Lions. That’s where Jack McInerney could be useful.
Also 24, McInerney was waived by the Portland Timbers in early March and is available on the market. Besides his young age, the striker holds six years of MLS experience under his belt, playing for four different teams, and has amassed 43 goals over 169 matches. He was also part of the U.S. Men’s National Team roster that won the 2013 Gold Cup.
Tony Tchani (Columbus Crew SC)
Orlando City’s defensive/center midfielder position is arguably crowded with Antonio Nocerino, Will Johnson, Servando Carrasco and Cristian Higuita all available for Head Coach Jason Kreis. But it is also a fact that none of them can match Tony Tchani’s physicality.
At 6-foot-4 and 185 pounds, the Cameroonian has all the physical tools to dominate the center of the field as he did in Columbus Crew SC’s 2015 MLS Cup campaign, amassing five goals and six assists. After a bad 2016, when he played in only 21 matches, Tchani is yet to make it to Crew SC’s game day roster this season and is probably available on the trading block.
What do you think? Do any of these three players interest you as potential added depth for Orlando City? Who else is out there on your radar?