Lizzy McCormack's

"Last week, I went to Philadelphia, but it was closed."

The city of Philadelphia is rich in sports tradition.  The Phillies have spent the better part of the last decade competing for second to last place in the National League East, the 76ers are constantly in search of new ways to monetize their history with several years-retired Allen Iverson whilst languishing in the NBA cellar and if I had a nickel for every time the Eagles won a Super Bowl championship, I'd have zero nickels. 

Daaaamn Demarco.  Back at it again with the fumbles. 

Daaaamn Demarco.  Back at it again with the fumbles. 

Philly's most successful athlete is surrounded by the dark cloud of death, RIP Apollo Creed, Mickey and Tommie Gunn.  Unfortunately for the city, the dark days will continue as the Lions seek to continue making moves early on in the MLS season.

2015 DUI All-Star Team, Mr. ILF 2015 shortlist selection and Union forward C.J. Sapong

2015 DUI All-Star Team, Mr. ILF 2015 shortlist selection and Union forward C.J. Sapong

With the losses of Brek Shea, Cyle Larin, and Tommy Redding due to injury and PRO fuckery respectively, we likely see a Beast unleashed as well as UCF standout Hadji Barry getting significant time en route to extending the upward trend of results.  Then again Kaká might find himself thriving in the false 9 position again as he seeks a second consecutive FIFA Ultimate Team in-form gold card.

Join us at our official ILF Watch Parties:  

Orlando:  Lizzy McCormack's , 55 N Orange Ave, Orlando, FL 32801

Lake County:  Tiki West Raw Bar and Grill, 118 W Ruby St, Tavares, FL 32778

Volusia County:  Robbie O'Connell's Pub, 550 Seabreeze Blvd, Daytona Beach, FL 32118

Ocala:   Gator's Dockside , 3920 SW 42nd St, Ste 101, Ocala, FL 34474

All venues are kid-friendly during the match and up to 30 minutes after the game's conclusion.  Come join us.

This just isn't working anymore, can we take a break?

Larin is dat guy.

Larin is dat guy.

Beginning this season Major League Soccer teams were given the option of not playing during periods of international duty.  This greatly benefits Orlando City Soccer Club as many of our beloved Lions were called up to play for their country, thus leaving us shorthanded for many games in 2015.

The international break is observed by leagues around the world and is seen as an opportunity to rest ailing players that aren't selected and it is generally perceived as a method of ensuring that club teams are able to compete at their strongest throughout the season.  Amongst the benefits there are casualties, and none more glaring than the soccer fan.

VROOOOOOOOM.

VROOOOOOOOM.

One fan in particular, a central Florida area resident of Honduran ancestry that I conversed with at the OCSC-NYCFC watch party at Lizzy McCormack's, was recently discussing with me the two week period as it is devoid of the beautiful game he loves.  When I made mention that he would be able to occupy himself with friends playing the newest iteration of FIFA, he called me a "nerd" and proceeded to order himself two shots of Jameson Irish Whiskey, ignoring me for the remainder of the evening. 

My only other interaction of the night was with a gentleman en route to the restroom that I inadvertently bumped into.  Prior to me asking his thoughts regarding the upcoming break in play, the young man peculiarly asked, "Are you a cop?" to which I responded, "No sir.  I'm a journalist. "

The man, a bit inebriated at this point, described the love and devotion he shares for Orlando City however became increasingly emotional when faced with the realization that there would be a two week layoff leading up to Orlando City's next match against the Portland Timbers.  After briefly referring to himself in the third person and describing his lack of patience with PRO referees, the individual chugged the remainder of his vodka soda then exited the establishment.  It is said that he's now traveling with Disney on Ice.   

 

We feel ya, brother

We feel ya, brother

This is a cautionary tale for those of us also suffering through the grueling international break with little action aside from spring training baseball and moderately related satirical articles.  You are not alone.  Be there for one another, the time will pass.

Orlando City v.s Chicago Fire Preview

It's matchday! And we're here to preview the Eastern Conference matchup between your Orlando City Lions and that team from Chicago that are just as useless as Derrick Rose's knees and Jay Cutler's arm.

ENTER NOCERINO:

Antonio Nocerino arrived in Orlando just a week ago but is already lighting it up in practice and catching the eye of many, mostly females. Said one Orlando City staff member "We had to put up higher fences around the training pitch as the women around Central Florida have become complete savages for Nocerino."  Nocerino has also had to install a wall taller than a giraffe around his new digs.  Fucking guy gets more play than DiCaprio on Oscar night. With Kaka slated to miss his second match in a row and Darwin Ceren out because of his red card, we expect Nocerino to get a good chunk of minutes tonight.

BACKGROUND:

Through 1 season in MLS, Orlando City has won two matches and drawn once against Chicago (We don't dare mention the U.S Open Cup exit). Last season the Fire finished in dead last in the East and at the bottom of the entire league. If you thought it couldn't get uglier, we're just starting. The Fire also haven't been to the playoffs the last 5 of 6 years, which is a difficult task in a league that sends over half the league to the playoffs. Somehow Chicago fans will blame the infamous Steve Bartman for their playoff drought, but the fact of the matter is the Chicago Fire just suck.

Chicago's favorite son, Steve Bartman.  

Chicago's favorite son, Steve Bartman.  

 SERVANDO CARRASCO:

I've expressed my displeasure with Carrasco on countless occasions so here I am to eat my words after Carrasco saved the day this past Sunday with a wonderful pass from about 700 yards out to Larin to setup the Adrian Winter winner. Don't let me see you sending weak ass back passes to the goal keeper again though.  Mr. Morgan needs to step up big tonight again. 

THE RETURN OF PAUL TENORIO:

Ah, the return of long time Orlando Sentinel/Orlando City writer, Paul Tenorio. Good old Paul left his post at the Sentinel recently and took an easier job for the worst team in MLS, the Chicago Fire. Did Tenorio jump ship when he saw the ILF Blog getting all the attention?  Leaving Orlando City for the Chicago Fire is the definition of hustling backwards.  It is trading in your Tesla for a Prius.  You do you however Tenorio.  Maybe he wanted to be closer to the Northwestern Alumni Club.  Frankly we don't care.  

FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS:

Friday night matches are a favorite of TBB's everywhere. TBB's love football and partying and nothing beats kicking off a weekend binge then with a Friday night kickoff. With that said, we think getting off work early today is a wise choice and we won't tell your boss if you decide to put an adult beverage of sorts into your Friday morning coffee.

AWAY FANS:

A fair amount of Chicago supporters made the trip to Orlando last season and we can expect the same tonight.

Sector Latino - Que tal raza.  Marimba on us. 

Section 8 - Not welcome.

I'm out! Let's rage tonight.

 

 

 

Lions dominate in preseason win versus All-Stars

"The most important thing is to go out there and have fun."  This was the closing statement by Brent Ashebrook, coach of the Fairfield County All-Stars, to his team prior to Wednesday's closed door friendly against Orlando City Soccer Club at Dr. Phillips Community Park.

The Lions impress leading up to the 2016 MLS season opener

The Lions impress leading up to the 2016 MLS season opener

The remark was meant to inspire excitement amongst the AYSO squad of 8-10 year olds, but in turn it also fueled the competitive fire of the MLS side they ended up playing against.

The Orlando City offense was sterling in a 22-0 drubbing of the Connecticut-area youths, with the Lions jumping out to a 5 goal lead just 15 minutes into the first half.

Kevin Molino watched the bout from the sidelines as he continues to make his way back from knee surgery that kept him sidelined for most of the 2015 season.  Starting in his place was Adrian Winter who was proving his worth by netting 12 goals throughout the contest, the most spectacular of which saw the Swiss Superman weave past the entire opposing defense for a precision strike in the left hand corner of the goal. 

Though the children were visibly forlorn well early into the match, the post-match congratulations and opportunities to take pictures with the players put smiles on their faces.  Fairfield County goalkeeper Justin Rebel even expressed to his teammates, with great excitement, the thrill of stopping both of Servando Carrasco's shot attempts.

 

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Scoring Summary:

ORL - Winter 1', 4', 7', 15' 19', 26', 33' 39', 45', 55', 61', 86'

ORL – Kaká 11' (PK), 47’ (PK), 57' (PK)

ORL - Collin 42'

ORL - Shea 47' 

ORL - Larin 46', 46'

ORL - Barry 77' 

ORL - Bendik 29' (PK)

ORL - Ramos 52'