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 Charlotte FC

Mint Street Mania: Ingredients of the Match

February 23, 2024 - Major League Soccer (MLS)
Charlotte FC News Release


Charlotte launches into their third season on Saturday night, inaugurating the Dean Smith era at Bank of America Stadium against New York City FC.

Here are the key components of the match:

Mint Street Mania

The fervent chants of "We are Charlotte, the mighty black and blue. We are from the Carolinas, sangre negra y azul" will resonate both outside and inside Bank of America Stadium as Charlotte commences their 2024 campaign before their passionate home crowd.

Not every team gets the privilege to start their season at home, let alone in front of an anticipated 60,000-plus crowd. Ranked once again 2nd in highest average attendance last season, the team has become known for its riveting home atmosphere. CLTFC have failed to capitalize on their home openers in the past two seasons, but now is as good as a time as ever to defend the Fortress and set a positive tone to start the season.

Maintaining Composure

As emotions run high in the season opener, and with thousands of fans watching, keeping composure becomes paramount. Particularly so against NYCFC, who have displayed a penchant for scoring from pressing situations in preseason matches.

Forward Monsef Bakrar, a recent addition to NYCFC, demonstrated this proficiency with five goals scored from turnovers created by aggressive pressing. Charlotte have been pushing the ball up the field quickly from the back throughout preseason, and must maintain their tempo to bypass NYCFC's press while remaining composed under pressure.

NYCFC will be hunting for mistakes, but if Charlotte FC can protect the ball, they'll be able to slice through the riskier defensive approach.

Undefeated Record Against NYCFC

History favors The Crown in this matchup, with Charlotte emerging victorious three times and drawing once in their four encounters with NYCFC. Despite a new coach at the helm, many core players who contributed to previous victories remain with the team.

Enzo Copetti, who secured a brace in the 3-2 win against NYCFC last season, will aim to build upon his success. His role under Dean Smith has higher clarity in 2024, as the English coach wants him focusing on his strengths: running in behind and getting inside the box to score goals.

With a strong foundation of past triumphs and bolstered by fan support, Charlotte seeks to extend their unbeaten streak against NYCFC and assert their dominance once more.


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