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2018 Orlando City Season in Review: Oriol Rosell

How did the Spanish midfielder fare in his first season for Orlando City?

MLS: Columbus Crew at Orlando City SC Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Oriol “Uri” Rosell joined the Lions after Orlando City traded $400,000 in Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) to FC Dallas to move up to the No. 1 position in the MLS Allocation Ranking Order during the off-season. While Uri was a Jason Kreis acquisition, he consistently made the lineup after James O’Connor took over, except when he was out with injury. He became one of many defensive midfielders that would see the field for the Lions and settled in nicely after a slow start.

Statistical Breakdown

Rosell appeared in 22 MLS matches in 2018, including 18 starts, totaling 1,701 minutes. Of course, Rosell was not available for selection for the first six matches of the season. He attempted 17 shots with six on frame and scored no goals, but did provide an assist. He was an 88.3% passer, averaged 2.3 tackles, 1.9 interceptions, and 1.5 clearances per game to go with two blocked shots. He committed 29 fouls, suffered seven fouls, and received six yellow cards, with no red cards. Rosell also appeared in two U.S. Open Cup matches on June 6 against Miami United and on July 18 against the Philadelphia Union.

Best Game

Uri’s best game was one of the most disappointing matches of the season for Orlando City as a whole. It was the game where Wayne Rooney stunned the Lions, the crowd, and all of MLS with the dramatic, long-distance assist on a goal that gave D.C. United the win against 10-man Orlando. However, before all of that, Rosell played a vital role in both Orlando City goals in that controversial 3-2 loss which included several video reviews, all of which went against the Lions. First, he created an own goal when his cross hit the leg of goalkeeper David Ousted and redirected into the net in the 50th minute to make it 1-1 at the time.

In the 71st minute, Uri sent this wonderful through ball behind the defense for Dom Dwyer to finish with a chip, as the Spaniard picked up his first assist as a Lion. The goal tied the match at 2-2 at the time.

In addition to being part of both Orlando goals, Rosell had a 90.5% passing rate, and even stood up Rooney in the 22nd minute of the match. For his efforts, Uri garnered our Man of the Match award.

2018 Final Grade

The Mane Land staff gave Rosell an average grade of 6 for the 2018 season. This matches the average grade of 6 he received over the course of the player grade posts through the season, with a low of 4.5 and a high of 7 and one Man of the Match award. Rosell, with a few exceptions, was a quality, consistent midfielder for the Lions and as he gained fitness and chemistry with his teammates, his game got better as the season progressed.

2019 Outlook

There was no shortage of defensive midfielders on the roster for Orlando City in 2018, including Rosell. It’s a good bet that some of them will be gone next season, but at 26, Rosell still has plenty of good years and could fit in with what O’Connor is looking to do next season. According to’s Sam Stejskal, Orlando City holds an option on Rosell’s contract, so whether he returns or not would seem to be up to the club. I think the quality that Rosell showed in his time on the field will keep him in Orlando for the 2019 season.

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