By MIKE GRAMAJO
Orlando City Soccer Club may have already started building their Major League Soccer squad for next year, but one of their prolonged players won’t be there come 2015.
Midfielder Yordany Alvarez, who was on loan from Real Salt Lake and signed an MLS contract for 2015 with OCSC, announced his retirement from professional soccer on Friday after suffering a concussion on June 7 during USL Pro play.
“We are deeply saddened by this news, but Yordany’s long-term health and well-being must be at the forefront of any decision regarding his future,” Orlando City President Phil Rawlins said in a news release. “To that end, both the Club and the entire Orlando Health medical staff were very prudent throughout this process in making sure he underwent extensive examinations to determine the possible causes of his condition and to find the best treatment so he can continue to live a full life.”
Alvarez, who defected from Cuba in 2008, was part of Phil Rawlins’ Austin Aztex organization from 2008-2010 before moving the franchise to Orlando in 2011. The Cuban native then navigated Orlando City to the 2011 USL Pro championship during their inaugural season, which also earned him league MVP for that season.
After one year in Orlando, Alvarez signed with Real Salt Lake in 2012 before reuniting with Heath prior to the 2014 USL Pro season. According to OCSC officials, Alvarez will not be leaving the organization, but will be working with the Orlando City Youth Academy.
Orlando City’s current 2015 MLS roster consists of Kevin Molino, Darwin Ceren, Tyler Turner, Tommy Redding, Kaka, Rafael Ramos and Estrela.
What do you think of this development? Who do you think will replace Alvarez in Orlando next year? Sad to see a player leave because of medical illness?
Share your thoughts below.