Former U-23 member and Pro team midfielder Adama Mbengue has resigned with the Lions for their final USL Pro season.
“Obviously we’re pleased to get him (Adama) back,” said Head Coach Adrian Heath on the arrival of Mbengue. “We weren’t sure on whether or not he would return, but the fact that he is coming back is a big plus for everybody. He’s a very popular member within the group and provides us with more options down the left-hand-side.”
Hailing from Senegal, the talented winger joined the Lions at age 17 and made 10 appearances with the U23s in 2012. Mbengue made his professional debut in a 3-0 victory over the Harrisburg City Islanders.
“Everyone still forgets that he is so young,” added Heath. “He has a lot of room to grow and this is a massive year for him.”
Mbengue only has 2 goals for Orlando City, but one of them came in the memorable 2013 USL Pro Championship Game. He joins a crowded midfield with the Lions already sporting three MLS Roster players, including Molino, Alvarez and Ceren. So while he has great potential, his work will be cut out for him.
“His first year I thought that he was exceptional, and although he didn’t quite reach the same heights last season, we’re hoping that we can get back on track this year,” said Heath. “The ball is very much in his court but we all know that he has an awful lot of ability.”
Mbengue is likely to make his first appearance of the 2014 campaign in the Lions’ final Walt Disney Pro Soccer Classic match.