Misc Soccer News

MLS SuperDraft Picks Lead Charlotte FC to Win over Nashville

Charlotte FC to Play FC Dallas and Necaxa in Leagues Cup 2023  

May 13, 2024 – Major League Soccer (MLS)
Charlotte FC News Release

Heading into MLS Rivalry Week, Charlotte FC versus Nashville wasn’t advertised as one of the rivalries of the weekend. Yet, a glance at social media interactions between the fanbases painted a different picture.

There was an unmistakable tension building up to this match. Ever since Charlotte entered the league, their encounters with their nearby rivals always carried an added edge and physicality. Nashville held the slight advantage in the head-to-head record, having one more win than The Crown after notching a 2-1 victory earlier in the season.

Both Head Coach Dean Smith and his players felt they gave away that match too easily by conceding soft goals in an otherwise winnable game.

“That was a bit of our motivation,” said center back Andrew Privett following the match. “They are one of our rivals and you know they got us at their place, so we wanted to bring them here and return the favor.”

Charlotte FC’s back line will be celebrating their back-to-back wins and consecutive clean sheets with deserved bottles of wine promised by their coach for every clean sheet they earn. Smith wasted no time in praising the work the entire back line put in, but he specifically highlighted the center back pairing of Adilson Malanda and Privett.

“I thought Privett was outstanding today, along with Malanda,” praised Smith.

“I felt him and Adil [Malanda] owed them one. We didn’t defend two crosses really well at their place, and that probably cost us a victory. I think they were right on it today and wanted to show how good they were.”

The spotlight on Saturday night belonged to the MLS SuperDraft class of 2023. Alongside Privett (who was selected late at 69th overall in the 3rd round), striker Patrick Agyemang shone with a Man of the Match performance and a match-winning goal.

Agyemang, picked 12th overall a year-and-a-half ago, posed a constant threat to Nashville’s defense right from the start. His dominance prompted Nashville Head Coach Gary Smith to make a halftime substitution with center back Walker Zimmerman replacing Brent Kallman, who had struggled to contain Agyemang.

However, this tactical adjustment proved futile as Agyemang continued his rampage, bettering the ex-U.S. international for the remainder of the match.

“Really pleased to see him [Agyemang] doing well because he’s got bags of potential,” said Smith. “There’s a lot of stuff to work with, but he wants to get better, and that’s…

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