2022 Orlando City Player Review: Joao Moutinho
For the next week, I'll be recapping each Orlando City player's season for all player who played at least 100 MLS minutes per FBRef in 2022, starting from the least used player to the most used.
Up next is Portuguese left back Joao Moutinho.
Moutinho dealt with a nagging injury early in the season, but eventually returned to his best form during the stretch run of the season. The former Akron Zip played 2,457 minutes in MLS this season, by far the most playing time of his Orlando City career.
He also played in five games during the succesful US Open Cup run. Playing almost exclusively as a left back who didn't push into the final third much, Moutinho didn't put up much in the way of counting stats but did have a goal and two assists in league play, and another assist in the Open Cup.
Moutinho was one of Orlando's most consistent performers over the course of the year. He almost always put in a quality shift in all phases of the game and finally had the availability to be a dependable player for Oscar Pareja all season.
In possession, the Portuguese defender is always one of the most important players in retaining possession and building with the ball, and even though he's not an elite defender, he a functional enough presence on the backline.
Moutinho's status in Orlando is up in the air moving forward. His contract is set to expire at the end of the year and there have been plenty of rumors that he could leave the club and go to Europe this offseason.
If Orlando is going to lose Moutinho, that's a massive loss for the club with no clear replacement for his technical ability or reliability on the left side fo the defense.