Orlando City Soccer Club announced the signing of Midfielder Jonathan Mendoza to the Under 23s squad, pending USSF approval. Mendoza was recently recognized as a Third Team All-American by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) at Stetson University.
“Johnny is a no-brainer,” Joe Avallone, head coach of the Orlando City U23s, said. “His work ethic is off the charts. He is very coachable and fits right into our system. We feel, without a doubt, he will be a pro.”
Mendoza led the A-Sun in scoring last season with a league-high 11 goals. He was awarded the A-Sun Player of the Year along with being named to the NSCAA All-South Region First Team. Medzoza got the chance to play against the Orlando City Lions in a pre-season match last March, and remembers what it was like to face a pro team. “It was intense,” said Mendoza. “But at the same time it was a great experience.”
With the signing of Mendoza, the Orlando City U23s added talent in the midfield position. A consistent playmaker and staple in the midfield at Stetson, Mendoza will provide a spark for Orlando City in the midfield.
Avallone is excited to bring a veteran of his system to the U23s. Mendoza is entering his fifth season with the U23s, quickly becoming a leader on and off the pitch. “He really is the heart of this team,” Avallone said. “Johnny really has relentless energy and will no doubt be a great addition to the team.”