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Charlotte FCs projected starting XI against NYCFC

By Ryan Donahue

Photo Courtesy of CJ Hellner

Charlotte FC are set to take on New York City FC this weekend at Yankee Stadium. Having come off the back of a disappointing defeat at home last weekend, Dean Smith’s side will be expected to get back on track.

Charlotte picked up 3 points against NYCFC at the start of the season at home however the opposition has since found some form having picked up home wins against  D.C. United and New England in the prior weeks. At home, New York have only lost one match so far this season and currently are tied for points with Charlotte in the Eastern Conference.

Ahead of the upcoming matchup, our team breaks down the predicted starting eleven and reflects on the most recent quotes from Smith heading into the weekend.

Defensively, it is likely that we will see Malanda back in the lineup with Tuloma dropping down to the bench. While Jaylin Lindsey has filled in at right back while Byrne has been unavailable it is likely that Smith will move back to starting Byrne this weekend. On the left, you would expect no changes to the previous week with both Privett and Uronen getting the nod to start. 

In the midfield, the three center midfielders will likely see that Westwood continues to captain the side partnered with Diani who will sit slightly ahead in the number eight position. Dejaegere will most likely line up in the attacking midfield although Petkovic could get minutes off the bench.

The forward line will likely see no change from last week with Vargas sitting on the left and Abada who has locked down the right wing position both looking to serve Copetti at the top of the offensive line. Where Smith could potentially make a change would be to swap Copetti for Agyemang but it is more likely he makes an appearance off the bench.

Last time Charlotte faced New York, Smith lined up in the same formation that he has continued to use all season and with New York also playing a similar formation it is unlikely that either side sets up much differently from a tactical perspective.

When asked about how the side is preparing ahead of the upcoming match, Smith jokingly stated that the side had been practicing running bases but on a serious note expects the field to be narrow and for his side to bounce back from last week.

Smith stated that last week the side lost it’s away during the game and will expect more emotional control this week when coming up against pressure. Smith felt that while the score line last week was harsh it was an opportunity to ensure the side prepared positively for this week.

During the press conference, when asked about how Charlotte has managed to maintain a winning record over NYCFC historically and how they will maintain that mentality he noted that last week's result and score left disappointment among the dressing room so the team will need to leverage those feelings as momentum to carry into the match.

With Charlotte coming away from a disappointing loss last week at home overall we should expect that while few changes may be made to the starting eleven it is more likely that Smith will want to see the mentality of his players be the reason for success against New York.

Projected starting XI

Photo Courtesy of Chosen 11