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Lion Links: 10/14/20

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Alexander Alvarado is official, MLS shares details on roster freezes, MLS power rankings, and more.

USA v Ecuador: Quarter Final - 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images

Good morning, Mane Landers! I hope this day finds you well. Let’s go ahead and jump into today’s links on this very fine game day.

Alexander Alvarado is Officially Official

Orlando City has officially announced the signing of Ecuadorian winger Alexander Alvarado on loan from Sociedad Deportiva Aucas in Ecuador’s Serie A through the end of the season with an option to buy. The newest Lion will wear the number 22 once his international transfer certificate and P-1 visa are received. Before training, Alvarado will have to go through a mandatory quarantine.

“Alexander possesses a great amount of versatility, able to play on the left, on the right or at the center,” Orlando City Executive Vice President of Soccer Operations Luiz Muzzi said in a club press release. “We’re excited to welcome another young, dynamic addition to our team and think he has a bright future ahead of him. We look forward to seeing what he can add to our already competitive roster.”

MLS Takeaways and Power Rankings

Orlando City didn’t get to play its scheduled match against Columbus last weekend, because of none other than COVID-19, ruining everything since 2020. Without the match, Portland was able to come in just above OCSC in the latest MLS Power Rankings, knocking the Lions out of the top five.

The takeaway at this point is that Oscar Pareja should earn Coach of the Year if the Lions can continue with their improved play over seasons past. How high should the team aim is a big question. Will the incredible turnaround from last year be enough, or do they push for a Supporters’ Shield and maybe an MLS Cup? I say set the bar high, and be satisfied even if you come a bit short.

MLS Roster Freeze Coming

The MLS shared details about the 2020 roster freeze yesterday. On Oct. 29, all clubs will have to submit their final rosters. Those rosters cannot be changed between Nov. 3 and the MLS Cup final. The only allowable moves will have to be in accordance with the Extreme Hardship rules and procedures, including when a team has fewer than 14 available outfield players or fewer than two goalkeepers available. With 2020 being what it is, the freeze date will be the same as the Secondary Transfer Window deadline, where there are usually a few weeks between.

The Future of Orlando City B.

The Athletic is reporting that Portland, Philadelphia, and Orlando will be pulling their teams from the USL at the end of the 2020 season.

In a later tweet, Jeff Rueter shared that MLS is working on a plan for a new reserves league, which could be announced as early as this week. If you have a subscription to The Athletic, go get the details directly from Reuter’s story.

Free Kicks
  • With El Pulpo in the net and former Lion Yoshimar Yotún on the pitch for Peru, it simply wasn’t enough as Neymar’s hat trick led Brazil to a 4-2 win over the Peruvians. Come home now, Octopus!

That’s going to do it for me this morning, everyone. Be sure to check back in throughout the day for all things Orlando City vs. New York City FC.