Yoshimar Yotun slowly adapting to squad after versatile performance


Yoshimar Yotun has only played in three games for the Lions since arriving earlier this month, but after another impressive performance from the Peruvian, he’s still finding his footing with the team.

The versatile player assisted in Cyle Larin’s goal in the 62nd minute during Orlando City’s 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday. 

Head coach Jason Kreis praised his individual performance, but Yotun insisted he’s still looking to get comfortable with the team’s attacking players.

“I’m very happy with each one of my players. I’ve been here for less than a month so we will get to know each other slowly. I’m trying to take advantage of my time during training to prepare and get comfortable with Cyle [Larin] and Dom’s [Dwyer’s] movements, and we will slowly start to get better,” said Yotun through a translator.

“Kaká always plays in the middle, so when I play on the right it’s easier to find him. Today we played really well but the result wasn’t what we were looking for,” he added.


Cyle Larin, right, celebrating with Yoshimar Yotun (No. 19) after setting up Orlando’s only goal during a 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday (Photo Courtesy of Orlando City).

Yotun debuted for Orlando on Aug. 12 during a 3-1 loss on the road against the New York Red Bulls. This past Saturday, however, the Peruvian notched his first assist for the club, but the quality of long-ball passes he’s been producing only paints a hopeful picture for a team that’s wanting to go back to winning ways, according to Kreis.

“I think you see in some of the passes that he plays and some of the vision that he has that he’s a high, high quality player,” Kreis said on Yotun’s last three performances. “It takes time to mesh into teams, but I think he’s doing a really nice job tonight. I think tonight he lost the ball probably a few more times than we expected, and especially when we put him at the left back position, but we were obviously trying to be aggressive and he was trying to make aggressive decisions with the ball so this is what sometimes has to happen when you’re chasing a game.”

Here’s the cross Yotun produced to assist Larin’s goal: 

Versatility is a trait the Peruvian carries 

Soon after in the 57th minute when Dillon Powers entered the game for left-back defender Donny Toia, Yotun dropped from playing left midfield to left back… a tactical move Kreis has used in the last two games, but a position Yotun is comfortable with.

“I have played many years in my career as a left back. I was a midfielder and I’ve played as a left back so I’m capable of doing it and I have played there many times in my career.”

While individually Yotun has been impressing, the overall team haven’t.

The Lions have two wins in their last 19 regular season games. Playing at home, hasn’t played to their advantage with the last victory at home occurring on May 31.

Yoshi, 27, understands the slump the team is going through. He knows he’s new to the team, but he believes the team is strong enough to solve its long-standing winless problem.

“It’s difficult not winning but we’re strong, we’re going to get through this and whatever we need to solve we’ll talk about it and we’re going to get better,” said Yotun.

With the Lions looking to get back to winning ways, they will have to do it without their two catalyst from last Saturday’s game. Yotun (Peru) and Larin (Canada) were called-up to their respective national teams and will miss Saturday’s crucial road match at Gillette Stadium against the New England Revolution. 

(Photo Courtesy of Orlando City) 

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