City Roundup: Orlando City signs Junior Urso; acquire $100K in GAM, make final draft pick


Photo: Courtesy of Orlando City SC

Orlando City announced Monday the signing of midfielder Júnior Urso ahead of the 2020 Major League Soccer season.

“We are very excited to welcome Júnior Urso to Orlando City. Coming from a renowned club like Corinthians, he brings a great amount of international experience to Orlando while allowing us to add more depth and a new skill set to our midfield,” said Orlando City EVP of soccer operations Luiz Muzzi. “He possesses great vision and abilities on the ball and we expect him to make an immediate impact on our roster.”

Urso, 30, will make above the maximum salary budget charge, and the Lions will determine his roster designation ahead of the MLS roster compliance date.

The Brazilian will sport the No. 11 jersey.

Urso played most recently with Brazilian Série A side Corinthians, making 48 appearances during his time with the Timão in 2019.  Beforehand, he played for Chinese Super League side Guangzhou R&F where he played from 2017-2018. He also played with Shandong Luneng from 2014-2016.

These were some other Orlando City news that dropped on Monday…

Lions trade for GAM 

Orlando City sent the Discovery Rights of Ecuadorian midfielder José Cifuentes to Los Angeles FC in exchange for $100,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM). 

Cifuentes was already heavily linked to LAFC, but the Lions owned the Ecuadorian’s Discovery Rights, resulting in Los Angeles sending reasonable allocation money to Orlando for those Rights to sign him on a transfer from Ecuador’s América de Quito.

Here’s what Muzzi said: “We identified José prior to the 2019 U-20 Men’s World Cup and quickly put him on our discovery list.

We’ve now built a roster where we already have depth and a high level of quality in this position, so to make a trade for $100,000 in GAM gives us the ability to spend some money on additional areas of the field and is really a credit to the talent of our scouting team.”

Orlando makes final draft pick

The Lions made their final pick of the 2020 MLS SuperDraft by selecting defender Nick O’Callaghan with the No. 57 overall pick in the third round.

O’Callaghan, 22, is one of four players that were selected in the later round of the draft and will join Orlando City for the start of preseason camp next week.

The Winter Springs High School graduate was selected out of Florida International University and is a former member of Orlando City’s Development Academy.

Orlando opted to pass on their fourth-round selection at No. 83 overall.

Here’s how Orlando City’s roster is shaping up 

Goalkeeper (3): Brian Rowe, Mason Stajduhar, Austin Aviza*

Defenders (10): Kyle Smith, Ruan, João Moutinho, Kamal Miller, Alex De John, Robin Jansson, Rodrigo Schlegel, Antônio Carlos, Jonathan Dean*, Nick O’Callaghan* 

Midfielders (9): Oriol Rosell, Jhegson Sebastián Méndez, Robinho, Mauricio Pereyra, Andrés Perea, David Loera, Jordan Bender, Júnior Urso, Joey DeZart*

Forwards (7): Dom Dwyer, Nani, Chris Mueller, Tesho Akindele, Santiago Patiño, Benji Michel, Daryl Dike 

* Selected in the draft, but not signed to a contract 

Out on Loan 

Josué Colmán, on loan at Cerro Porteño (Primera Division, Paraguay)

For more soccer news, follow the Soccer Journal on Twitter: @osjsoccer


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