By Quin Welch, LouCity Insider
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville City FC coach James O’Connor and his 2016 roster took to the Louisville City Training Ground on Wednesday afternoon.
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The team, which returned on Saturday after a two-week preseason training camp at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., was met with some less than ideal weather. Temperatures hovered around 34 degrees for most of the two-hour practice. However, O’Connor said weather won’t ever stop his team from having a productive practice.
“I think we all know what to expect as far as the weather,” O’Connor said. “I think it is what it is, so we just have to put our heads down and we get on with it.”
O’Connor’s team started the session by participating in a lane-pass drill, where several balls were in play in a small space. Players had to make one touch, make a quick pass to a teammate in another lane and then move to another lane. O’Connor said he was looking for players to use their mouths in order to make the drill run smoothly.
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“It’s still preseason, we’re still trying to make sure people understand their roles and responsibilities. I think any communication in any team is important,” O’Connor said. “I think it’s important that people can help each other by talking and giving good information.”
The LouCity coach said he wants his team to break the quiet trend of modern-day players.
“If you look at the modern-day footballer, a lot are quite quiet and quite passive,” O’Connor said. “We need people to take on leadership roles and to help each other and to help their teammates.”
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In addition to the lane-pass drill, the team worked on attacking and defending in the final third, possession and on crossing and finishing.
“Since it’s still preseason, you’re gonna spend time working on each facet of play,” O’Connor said.
Know Your Role
At this point in the preseason, O’Connor said he is focused on making sure his players know their roles as a part of the squad.
“It’s important people understand their roles and their responsibilities and that’s something we keep drumming into the players. It’s all a part of the process.”
Entering the 2016 preseason, Louisville City FC has returned 13 players from the 2015 roster – including reigning USL Goal of the Season winner Aodhan Quinn, former English Premier League striker Cameron Lancaster and several Major League Soccer veterans like defender Ben Newnam. New additions include MLS Cup-winning forward Chandler Hoffman, University of Louisville alumnus Paolo DelPiccolo and University of Kentucky alumnus George Davis IV.
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Louisville City FC begins regular season play on March 26 at Charlotte Independence. LouCity then returns to Louisville Slugger Field on April 2 to host New York Red Bulls II in the home opener, with a special 3 p.m. kickoff.
Fans can stay up to date with all of Louisville City’s breaking news, roster updates and ticketing information by following the Club on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Season tickets are available for Louisville City’s historic second season via the Club’s official website.