The OC 3: Tony Pulis thinks City is ready for MLS
"This city is made for top flight football in America."1. Little Turnaround - The past week has been an eventful one for Orlando City. It has consisted of: three matches in four days, one USL PRO Regular Season Championship, training sessions with Stoke City coaching staff for Orlando City Youth Soccer and an international friendly that drew more than 10,000 fans to the Florida Citrus Bowl. After all that, you’d figure there’d be a bit of a break for the Lions. Not so fast.
City travels to Harrisburg on Wednesday, with a match against the Rhinos in Rochester on Friday. Check back on Orlandocitysoccer.com for more information about those two road matches and more as the 2012 regular season slowly draws to a close.
2. Remembering Tony Pulis’ Quotes - When Stoke City Manager Tony Pulis walked into the post game conference room Saturday night, he spoke little of the 1-0 victory his club had over City at the Florida Citrus Bowl. He did, however, speak of Major League Soccer and what could be accomplished if Orlando makes the jump to America’s first division.
He saw parallels with what Stoke City did when they were promoted to the English Premier League in 2008 and made sure everyone knew in that room and beyond that Orlando is ready for the MLS.
“The city itself will thrive and the football club will thrive with it,” Pulis said. “It was a lot like what Stoke went through when we got to the Premiership. They’ll have full houses here. I think they deserve it. This city is made for top flight football in America.”
3. Round Of Applause For The U23s - On the same day Orlando City was playing against Stoke City, City’s PDL side was in the midst of a National Semifinal match against the Carolina Dynamo.
The U23s, who qualified for postseason play in the last match of the PDL regular season, captured the Southern Conference Championship after topping the Laredo Heat and Austin Aztex, earning a birth into the National Semifinals.
After taking an early lead, Orlando was unable to respond to a two-goal swing late in the first half by Carolina, falling 2-1. Congratulations are in order to the coaching staff and players who made such an impact in Orlando’s first venture in the PDL playoffs. It certainly won’t be the last.