salsa

Orlando City v. NYRB: Match Recap

Your #1 most trusted Orlando City blog is back with another banger bringing you a recap of Orlando City's win over that team named after a subpar energy drink.  

 

Playoffs? Playoffs?! 

Yes this was only the fourth match of the season but the Lions are roughly a quarter of the way to the point tally (41) they achieved in 2016 in which they missed the playoffs by 1 point. There are still plenty of matches to be played but with the game in hand against New England in the fall, Kaka returning in the next month or so this team needs to have their eyes set on playoffs and nothing else. Plus I just like saying "Playoffs? Playoffs?" in my best Jim Mora voice. 

Spectors Back Pocket: 

Many are already calling him our best signing of the season and while I personally would give that to Will Johnson, I can't doubt how brilliant Jonathan Spector has been for us in his short time in Orlando. Guys like Kaka, Rivas and Barnes will get you on your feet but Spector is the type of player you'd let your daughter go on a date with and have home by 9. The man literally clears everything in the box, if an asteroid was plummeting to Earth I'd feel confident that Spector would clear it. The best part about Spector is that he's made everyone on his line seemably better. Guys like Jose Aja and Tommy Redding have looked class when paired with him and I'm sure Bendik will be sending him a nice Christmas card later this year.

Rivas Island: 
 

Frustrating at times? Yes. Capable of moments of brilliance? Hell yes. During warm ups Rivas was seen launching balls 20 stories high and all the way to Orange Avenue but once the match kicked off Rivas put on a wonderful display of skill that had many in the stadium drooling and European clubs ready to open their pocketbooks. There's days when Rivas is on his game and he's the most talented player on the pitch and there's also days when he's the most frustrating player and you want to punch yourself in the face. Turning 23 later this week, Rivas still has time to work on his shot and when that day comes watch out, boys and girls.

New Faces: 

Six Lions players were involved in the match yesterday that weren't here at the end of the 2016 season. This team is quickly being molded to Jason Kreis's vision and early results are proving that. Toia has thrived at left back, a position that's been a revolving door the past two seasons. Spector and Will Johnson have provided coverage for Bendik that he's long deserved. Early showings from Scott Sutter and Luis Gil are good, while Giles Barnes has brought a new energy and passion to the attack that Orlando City has needed. Again, we're only 4 matches into the season and there's still a high possibility that the shit hits the fan in the upcoming summer months but there's definitely a different feeling about this squad.

Next Up:

The LA Galaxy roll into town next Saturday for a sold out showdown in Orlando. Last time LA came to town, we opened a can of whoop ass with a 4-0 victory at the Citrus Bowl in 2015. Losing 3 of their first 5 matches sounds nice and all but clubs in the past have loved coming to Orlando in bad form and turning up against us. Things feel different in Orlando nowadays and my gut tells me we can add another 3 points to our tally on Saturday.

 

Vamos Orlando! 

 



 

 

 

MLS Expansion Has Only Begun...

Don Garber is a man of ambition.  He is the type of guy that would fight a homeless man in the subway for a quarter should that situation arise.  In a scoop recently given to this inquiring ILF blogger, Garber' recent announcement of MLS expansion to 28 teams is only the beginning  and a pretense as he is just testing the waters for his true objective.  In reality Don and the suits at MLS headquarters want to expand Major League Soccer to 351 teams across the country.  That's right ladies and gentlemen the real expansion goal is 351 soccer clubs under one umbrella of MLS.  

Our balding commissioner believes the NCAA model for college basketball would work in soccer.  It was told us anonymously that when the self proclaimed "Soccer Don" learned about the 2011 deal the NCAA signed for 10.8 billion dollars with CBS and Turner Broadcasting for the March Madness television rights deal, Garber spit out his Citrus Lime Fresca and was quoted as saying "holy fuck that's a lot of cheddar!"

             All Hail the Don

            All Hail the Don

Quickly the wheels started turning in the Dons head and he began thinking of how he could restructure Major League Soccer to get a television deal worth in the vicinity of the NCAA tournament for the MLS playoff.  For starters Don said to the MLS Board of Directors, "we have to expand to EVERY major market in America, big time college towns and even podunk crap cities like Tampa if we want to make it to the next level."  The Soccer Don further added "look at the division one NCAA model for men's college basketball.  Those guys have 351 first division teams across the nation and have a 64 team tournament to crown their champion where they make it rain with money. Why can't we do the same?  We have to think bigger and not limit ourselves by artificial constraints!" 

This would be an unprecedented level of expansion compared to any single professional sports league on the planet.  The Dons also suggested that they mimmick the NCAA basketball model and have the season culminate in a 64 team tournament much like the NCAA "March Madness" cash cow.  Garber has floated the name "Nutty November" as title of this 64 team knock out tournament to crown our MLS champion although that is still in the works.  

Don Garber is said to be a tyrant.  Some believe he runs MLS like the WWE where his favorites always come out ahead with the league's archaic rules that change as they go.  Others simply think he is an odd looking fellow who looks like Sam the Eagle from the Jim Henson Muppets.  Regardless of what you make of The Don however you can't question his ambition.  He is a man with a vision and a plan.  28 teams is only the beginning.  Haters will always bring up concerns of over saturation of the sport, the watering down of the professional soccer product in America and the league not addressing issues like shit markets that don't perform up to par (Colorado, Chicago, Dallas, DC United).  This does not suede The Soccer Don however.  No, no, no my barra brava friends.  Garber is the kind of guy who back in the day would play monopoly with his kids and steal money from the bank when they were not looking just to make sure he would bury his children in defeat.  His ambition knows no bounds and he is dead set on his vision becoming a reality and he will not be denied.

           Sam the Eagle or Don Garber?

           Sam the Eagle or Don Garber?

Things like league structure and scheduling are yet to be determined and works in progress said our anonymous source.  The MLS front offices were unavailable for comment.