Orlando City To Open 2013 Regular Season
By Michael Moore II // April 6, 2013
CENTRAL FLORIDA, USA – Orlando City kicks off the 2013 USL PRO on the road Sunday, April 7, in Phoenix against expansion club Phoenix FC at Sun Devil Soccer Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.
Kickoff for the game is set for 10:30 p.m. EST as the Lions look to capture their third straight USL PRO regular season title.
“We’ve had a great preseason and I think we’ve gotten progressively better,” said Orlando City Head Coach Adrian Heath after Orlando’s win in St. Petersburg over the Tampa Bay Rowdies Saturday night. “We’re looking forward to having another big season.”
The Lions begin the regular season with a head of steam after concluding the 2013 preseason, which wrapped up last week as Orlando captured the I-4 Derby presented by United World Soccer against 2012 NASL Champion Tampa Bay Rowdies in St. Petersburg.
Orlando scored late to secure the 3-2 win over the Rowdies and 6-4 aggregate overall. Kevin Molino, Adama Mbengue and Dom Dwyer all score for the Lions in the win in front of hundreds of City supporters who made the trip down I-4.
Team Captain Gallardo Out 4-6 Weeks
Orlando City has signed former backup Goalkeeper Sean Kelley, pending USSF approval. The move comes as starting Goalkeeper and Team Captain Miguel Gallardo sustained a knee injury in training and will be out 4-6 weeks.
“We hope Miguel has a speedy recovery,” said Heath. “But we are lucky to have Sean with us. He’s been with us and knows the team. It’s a great opportunity for him and it’s good to have him back.”
Kelley is familiar to Heath’s system, signing with the team in 2010 in Austin, Texas, and moving with the franchise to Orlando in 2011. The backup famously came in for Gallardo in the 2011 USL PRO Championship game, making key saves in the penalty shootout against the Harrisburg City Islanders to help secure the league championship. The Kentucky native appeared in four matches for the Lions in 2012, recording an 0.571 Goals Against Average (GAA) and two shutouts.
Kelley, along with new Sporting Kansas City loanee Jon Kempin, will have to fill in for the injured Gallardo for the beginning of the 2013 USL PRO season. Gallardo appeared in 21 games for the Lions in 2012, leading the league is GAA (.780) while recording eight clean sheets. The 2011 USL PRO Goalkeeper of the Year holds the record for clean sheets in a season with 11 in 2011.
Season Tickets On Sale Now
City’s first two seasons have been an amazing success. After sweeping the board in 2011 with both Regular Season and the USL PRO Championships, Orlando went the entire 2012 season without losing a single regular season home game, capturing the regular season championship by a record margin and making the Citrus Bowl into fortress.
Heart break ensued in the semi finals, but this year the Lions are out to reclaim their crown as kings of the USL PRO.
Don’t miss the chance to watch every second of action with a 2013 season ticket. That includes all 14 regular season home games at the Florida Citrus Bowl, as well as discounted pricing for exhibition games and a whole host of benefits.
Exclusive Season Ticket Holder Benefits
• Specific seat location for every home game
• First rights to playoff tickets
• $10 voucher on any international friendly game
• Season ticketholder discount card
• 10% discount on Orlando City merchandise
• Discounted U23 tickets