Orlando take Cyle Larin with first overall pick; NYCFC select Shelton
Orlando City selected Cyle Larin with the first overall pick while New York City FC picked Khiry Shelton with the second overall pick in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft.
The 19-year-old Canadian international became the first draft pick in the expansion franchise’s history, and the first Canadian to be selected first overall.
"We’re delighted we got him, we think he’s got a huge upside," Orlando City head coach Adrian Heath told reporters. "Look at his goal record, he’s big, he’s strong, he’s athletic so we think we’ve got a lot of tools to work with. We just hope to get him in as soon as possible and start working with him."
The dynamic attacker turned pro after two seasons at the University of Connecticut, where he scored 23 goals and added six assists in 39 games for the Huskies. He was named AAC rookie of the year in 2013 and offensive player of the year in 2014.
"If he can translate what he’s been doing in college in the pros, they generally go for a lot of money and become very valuable," Heath added.
Larin did not attend the draft, due to being off with the Canadian U-20 team in Jamaica. He has also been capped three times by the senior national team.
Similarly, Shelton became the first draft pick in New York City FC’s history, giving the MLS expansion club a talented prospect out of Oregon State heading into the 2015 season. Shelton was named the Pac-12 Player of the Year in his senior season, scoring 10 goals and collecting 12 assists for the Beavers.
— New York City FC (@NYCFC) January 15, 2015
Shelton joins Designated Players David Villa and Frank Lampard at New York City FC, who also added USMNT international Mix Diskerud to its squad earlier this week.
Montreal selected Central Florida forward Romario Williams with the third pick. San Jose picked Michigan State midfielder Fatai Alashef fourth, and Portland selected Notre Dame midfielder Nick Besler, whose older brother Matt plays for Kansas City and was started for the United States at last year’s World Cup.
Syracuse goalkeeper Alex Bono, attending the United States men’s national team training camp in California, went sixth to Toronto.
Information from The Associated Press and FOXSoccer.com’s Charles Ventura contributed to this report.
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