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United Soccer League Unveils 2019 USL Championship Schedule

December 19, 2018 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) - North Carolina FC News Release

CARY, N.C. -North Carolina FC will play a 34-game balanced schedule in 2019 as the United Soccer League has released the USL Championship schedule today. The highly-anticipated schedule will feature home and away contests with every opponent in the Eastern Conference, providing NCFC with a balanced schedule for the first time in years.

While kick off times for all matches are still being determined, North Carolina FC will begin the season on Saturday, March 9 at 4 p.m. ET, at home against two-time defending USL Cup Champions, Louisville City FC. The high-profile match will certainly be one of the top matchups during the league's opening weekend and the first glance at new North Carolina FC head coach Dave Sarachan and his squad.

Season tickets are currently on sale, and individual game tickets will go on sale in February.

The USL Championship's Eastern Conference will feature four expansion teams (Loudoun United FC, Memphis 904, Hartford Athletic and Birmingham Legion FC) as well as two current teams (Swope Park Rangers and Saint Louis FC) joining the Eastern Conference after competing in the Western Conference a season ago.

North Carolina FC will look to defend its Southern Derby Cup, won for the fourth time in franchise history last season, by engaging its biggest rivals Charleston Battery and Charlotte Independence four times this season. The balanced schedule will provide an even number of games between the teams, meaning every matchup will help decide the 2019 result of the historic, supporter-led competition that began in 2000.

The eight-month season will feature many exciting home and away contests throughout the spring, summer and fall, highlighted by numerous regional rivalries.

North Carolina FC will host a massive Fourth of July game against the Charlotte Independence on Thursday, July 4 in a fun-filled, action-packed national holiday.

An active home schedule in the fall will present optimal opportunities for fans to cheer on North Carolina FC, with seven home games in September and October.

The team will close out the regular season with three home matches in its last four games, allowing the team a great opportunity to earn points at home during a critical portion of the season.

The 2019 USL Cup Playoffs will expand to include 10 teams from each conference, with the lowest four seeds in each conference opening the postseason in the Play-In Round, provisionally slated for Wednesday, October 23 with the No. 7 seed hosting the No. 10 seed and the No. 8 seed hosting the No. 9 seed for a place in the Conference Quarterfinals.

Following the Play-In Round, the two teams to advance will be placed into the main bracket for the Conference Quarterfinals, with the lower remaining seed facing the conference's No. 1 seed and the higher remaining seed facing the No. 2 seed.

The single-elimination format will then continue for the following four weekends in a fixed-bracket format with the higher seed in each matchup serving as host through the Eastern and Western Conference Finals. The 2019 USL Cup will be held between November 14-18, 2019 and be hosted by the conference champion with the better regular-season record.

Sarachan and his staff have already been hard at work pulling the pieces together for a successful 2019 season. The current North Carolina FC team includes goalkeeper Alex Tambakis, defenders Aaron Guillen, Steven Miller and DJ Taylor, midfielders Dre Fortune and Graham Smith and forwards Donovan Ewolo and Marios Lomis. More player announcements are expected to follow soon.

Season tickets for North Carolina FC's 2019 season are on sale now and feature many great packages and benefits - including the brand-new Auto-Renewal Program and traditional benefits such as exclusive meet the team opportunities. Click here to learn more about season tickets or call the Coastal Credit Union Box Office at 919-459-8144 to speak with a ticket representative.

North Carolina FC's 2019 USL Championship Schedule

Date: Opponent: H/A: Venue:

Saturday, March 9, 2019 Louisville City FC Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, March 16, 2019 Bethlehem Steel FC Away Goodman Stadium

Saturday, March 30, 2019 Charleston Battery Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, April 6, 2019 Memphis 904 Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, April 13, 2019 Atlanta United FC 2 Away Fifth Third Bank Stadium

Saturday, April 20, 2019 Charlotte Independence Away Sportsplex at Matthews

Saturday, April 27, 2019 Hartford Athletic Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, May 4, 2019 Indy Eleven Away Lucas Oil Stadium

Sunday, May 12, 2019 Ottawa Fury FC Away TD Place

Saturday, May 18, 2019 Birmingham Legion FC Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Friday, May 24, 2019 New York Red Bulls II Away MSU Soccer Park

Saturday, June 1, 2019 Hartford Athletic Away Dillon Stadium

Saturday, June 8, 2019 Tampa Bay Rowdies Away Al Lang Stadium

Saturday June 15, 2019 Swope Park Rangers Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday June 22, 2019 Saint Louis FC Away Toyota Stadium

Saturday June 29, 2019 Nashville SC Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Thursday July 4, 2019 Charlotte Independence Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, July 13, 2019 Birmingham Legion FC Away BBVA Compass Field

Wednesday, July 17, 2019 Loudoun United FC Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, July 20, 2019 Pittsburgh Riverhounds Away Highmark Stadium

Saturday, July 27, 2019 Atlanta United FC 2 Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019 Indy Eleven Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, Aug. 10, 2019 Memphis 904 Away AutoZone Park

Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019 Pittsburgh Riverhounds Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019 Tampa Bay Rowdies Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019 Louisville City FC Away Louisville Slugger Field

Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019 Loudoun United FC Away Loudoun United Stadium

Saturday, Sept. 7, 2019 Bethlehem Steel FC Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019 Swope Park Rangers Away Children's Mercy Victory Field

Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019 Charleston Battery Away MUSC Health Stadium

Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019 Ottawa Fury FC Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019 New York Red Bulls II Home WakeMed Soccer Park

Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019 Nashville SC Away First Tennessee Park

Saturday, Oct. 19, 2019 Saint Louis FC Home WakeMed Soccer Park

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