Photo Credit: Jessica Stone Hendricks Photography
Sometimes in your career, you just need a change of scenery. After spending his entire USL career playing in Charleston, Heviel Cordoves decided it was time to move on this past offseason. The Cuban striker stayed on the East Coast, deciding to sign with the Richmond Kickers. “I thought it would be a good team, where I could fit and feel comfortable with my style of playing,” Cordoves says of his decision.
Splitting time with players like Dane Kelly and Romario Williams in Charleston, Heviel scored 28 goals for the Battery, in league play and the US Open Cup. Now, he’s trying to be the first choice option for a new club. He is still adapting to the new things he’s experiencing in Richmond, but he knows it’s a process.
The Kickers’ attack is definitely a work in progress. They sit 25th in the league in goals and dead last in shots. When asked how to turn around the offense, he answers, “Since I do not know, I’m giving the best of me and I’m sure my teammates are also. But, I think there are many aspects of the game that must be corrected to be successful in the attack.” He has one league goal this season for Richmond. While scoring goals is his favorite thing to do on the pitch for Richmond, his favorite spot off the pitch in the city, so far, is Belle Isle.
Not only is this his first season away from Charleston, it’s also the first without his good friends, Maikel Chang and Odisnel Cooper. The trio defected together from the Cuban national team in 2012 and signed with Charleston. While Cooper has remained with the Battery, Chang also left the Holy City, now playing for Real Monarchs SLC. “Maikel Chang is like a younger brother to me. We have known each other for more than 10 years and we have gone through many stages of life together,” Cordoves explains. “We talk almost every week. He is a very intelligent player, with good technique, and great vision of the game.”
When the Kickers’ turn things around, you can expect Heviel Cordoves to be a big piece to that puzzle. He may be new to Richmond, but he’s a USL playoff veteran that will do his part to get his new club there.