Orange County SC have been busy with roster announcements this week, dropping two more batches of returning players for the upcoming 2020 USL Championship season.
Midfielders Aodhan Quinn and Harry Forrester, forward Darwin Jones, defender Kevin Alston and goalkeeper Frederik Due are set to come back again for the club, which went to the playoffs for the second straight season under head coach Braeden Cloutier in 2019.
Considering these are among the core pieces of the roster, it’s good news. With standout forward Michael Seaton moving on to sign a deal in Germany this offseason, getting Jones back, who was co-leader in scoring during the regular season, with 12 tallies, is fantastic news. The team will still need to fill Seaton’s scoring boots, but Jones showed considerable growth in 2019 and rounded into a key figure.
Alston typically served as captain when healthy, so his impact is apparent, while Due joined midseason with Orange County needing a starter and he slotted in perhaps better than expected considering the circumstances. In coming back, he is likely to be the starter with 17-year-old Aaron Cervantes (also announced to be returning) probably to get spot action in 2020 as he continues to develop.
Quinn is the headliner here, the midfielder the key player over the past two seasons, capable of contributing his share to the scoresheet while also getting stuck in in the midfield. And while Forrester’s 2019 ended on a sour note, with an unneeded red card in the playoff loss to eventual champion Real Monarchs, the English attacker showed considerable versatility in playing a deeper role for Orange County, with the hope he’ll contribute more to the attack in his second season in the USL Championship.
The veteran quintet joins fellow experienced hand Michael Orozco and youngsters Cervantes, Diego Lopez and Francis Jacobs as back on the roster for 2020. We’ll see what other moves Orange County SC make in the coming weeks as they prepare for the new season.
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