Fans of the Central Florida club are proving that support won’t be an issue when they arrive in the MLS.
Fans of Orlando City SC were out in full force following the major news that plans for an MLS-quality stadium were set in motion.
10,697 was the number that turned up to watch Orlando City beat Seattle Sounders Reserves 2-0 to move joint-top of the USL Pro – a regular season attendance record.
For comparison, the league attendance average in 2013 has been around the 3,000 mark, whilst the record in 2012 was 6,606 (also set by Orlando).
If that number still doesn’t sound like much, fans might be interested to hear that at the weekend Yeovil faced Birmingham FC in the English Championship, the sixth most watched football league on the planet. The attendance for that game was 8,717.
This attendance landmark is a huge statement of intent from Orlando. Whilst their argument previously may have heavily relied upon ‘build it and they will come’, it now looks like they will most certainly come – stadium or otherwise.
The Lions are set to face off against joint-league leaders Richmond Kickers on Wednesday. It’s a great shame that the match is set to take place in Virginia rather than at home in Florida as there’s a strong chance it may well have broken the record again.
The upcoming game against the Kickers could well determine who wins the USL Pro outright. The penultimate game of the 2013 season sees the two teams squaring off level on points and only four goals difference. Neither team has it easy on the final day though, with Orlando City at home to fifth-placed Charlotte Eagles and the Kickers travelling to seventh-placed Pittsburgh Riverhounds.
With the good news coming thick and fast for Orlando City’s MLS hopes, a USL Pro title at this stage would be the cherry on top, and only further strengthen their already solid MLS bid.