Rounds one and two of the MLS SuperDraft are tomorrow and will be streamed on Twitter starting at 12:30 p.m. Rounds three and four will be held on Jan. 13 via conference call.
Orlando City has six overall picks this year, including three in the second round. The fifth pick in every round comes from the team’s poor MLS finish last season. The Lions also picked up two more picks in Round 2 from Minnesota and New England.
Below are some of the players that Orlando might be interested in. All are expected to go in the first round. The players denoted with an asterisk (*) are on a Generation Adidas contract. These players’ contracts do not count against teams’ annual salary budgets.
Cal Jennings, F
The Mane Land’s own Michael Citro wrote about the UCF product last week. Orlando has been going with the local talent the past two years. The club brought in Benji Michel and Santiago Patino in 2019 and have already signed two players to Homegrown contracts this off-season. Jennings has shown he can find the back of the net and Orlando can certainly use another attacking option.
Henry Kessler*, D
The Lions will likely be adding another defender this off-season, and Kessler definitely deserves a look. At 6-foot-4 and 185 lbs. he would be the biggest player on Orlando City. Kessler played every minute for UVA this past season and has the potential to be in the starting rotation from day one.
Ryan Raposo*, MF/F
Raposo could play out wide or as the center attacking midfielder. He scored 19 goals and bagged 14 assists in two seasons with Syracuse, with 15 of those goals coming last season. He made the ACC All-Freshman Team in 2018 and in 2019 he made the All-ACC First Team and USC All-South Region Second Team. His flexibility would be a huge asset to Oscar Pareja. He would also have time to develop playing behind Nani, Chris Mueller, Robinho, and Tesho Akindele.
Robbie Robinson*, F
Robinson is arguably the best talent in the draft and there is a very good possibility that he will not be available at five. The 6-foot-2 forward scored 18 goals and added nine assists in just 19 games in 2019 on his way to win the MAC Hermann Trophy. He would not only add quality depth up top but he could be in the starting rotation.
Aaron Molloy, MF
Junior, Penn State
The defensive-minded midfielder was a 2019 MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist and the Big Ten Midfielder of the Year. After Orlando’s roster overhaul, midfield is a position of need and Molloy could step into the role immediately. He could start right away and has the ability to provide stability in front of the defense. As you can see in his highlights below, Molloy also has the ability to score from distance. One of the only downsides with Molloy is that he will require an international spot. This could deter Orlando, but the Irishman would be a game changer should the front office go with him.
Who should the Lions select at No. 5? Do you like the options above or is there someone else you see Orlando targeting at that spot? Let us know in the comments below.