BREAKING NEWS: Adrian Heath Fired As Head Coach of Orlando City Soccer Club
By Space Coast Daily // July 6, 2016
Bobby Murphy NAMED Interim Head Coach
ABOVE VIDEO: Highlights from an embarrassing 4-0 loss to FC Dallas on Monday. Orlando City did not register a shot attempt on goal during the match (BBC Sport Video)
(ORLANDO CITY SC) ORLANDO, FLORIDA – Orlando City SC has agreed to amicably part ways with Head Coach Adrian Heath, effective today. Coach Heath has been with the club since its beginnings in Austin, Texas, in 2008. He relocated with the team to Orlando in 2011.
Orlando City SC Founder & President Phil Rawlins said in a statement, “It is always a very difficult decision to part ways with a head coach and not one that the Board of Directors has taken lightly. It is even more difficult when that coach has been instrumental in the growth of the Club since its inception over eight years ago.”
“Adrian has served this Club with passion and enthusiasm.” While our successes together are undoubtable, we believe the renewed energy this change will bring will be uplifting for the team. We feel that the time has come for us to move on with our future in MLS. We continue to remain very excited about the growth of our Club.”
“This is a very difficult moment, but I fully support the decision made by the Board. I want to thank Adrian for the commitment and hard work he has given our team over the years and wish him success in his career,” said Club Majority Owner Flavio Augusto da Silva.
“Now, it’s time for us to turn our focus onto the rest of the season. We will do everything in our power to continue improving and giving our fans the best of us because they have been fantastic supporters.”
Heath had a tremendous track record with Orlando City, winning two USL Championships and three USL regular season titles.
Assistant Head Coach, Mark Watson, has also left the Club by mutual agreement, effective immediately.
While the Club conducts a comprehensive search for a new head coach, the team will be led by Assistant Coach Bobby Murphy and Orlando City B Assistant Coach Anthony Pulis.
The decision came two days after the Lions suffered an embarrassing 4-0 loss at FC Dallas. Orlando City (4-4-8, 20 points) is in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, one spot out of playoff contention.
COMPLETE STATEMENT FROM PHIL RAWLINS, ORLANDO CITY SC FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT:
Today is a very sad day for everyone associated with Orlando City and for me personally, as we agree to the mutual release of my good friend and our Head Coach for the past eight years, Adrian Heath.
As a Board, we believe that we have reached a tipping point in our Club’s history where we must evaluate, learn and make difficult decisions. Decisions that are designed to continue our progression as a Major League Club.
However, Adrian’s success in USL and his commitment to the Club cannot be denied and will not be forgotten. Successes that included such memorable nights as the 2011 and 2013 Championship games, and deep runs in the U.S. Open Cup, with wins against several MLS teams, and his contributions to two stunning Opening Day games in 2015 and 2016.
Adrian has a tremendous track record in the Minor Leagues with three regular Season Titles, two USL Championships and two USL Coach of the Year Awards.
I want to sincerely thank Adrian for eight great years of service to our Club. He has been incredible to work with and a huge piece of the puzzle in our transition from USL to MLS. His hard work and dedication will always be appreciated by those he has coached and by those who have followed our rapid development into a Major League Club.
We wish Adrian nothing but the best as he takes the next step in his career. He will forever be a Lion and always welcome at our Club.
– Phil Rawlins
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