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Charlotte FC aim to make strong impression vs. Red Bulls

Sportsnaut
May 29, 2022; Seattle, Washington, USA; Charlotte FC midfielder Brandt Bronico (13) looks to pass while dribbling against the Seattle Sounders FC during the first half at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Christian Lattanzio will make his debut as the interim manager of Charlotte FC on Saturday afternoon when the expansion club hosts the New York Red Bulls.

Charlotte (5-8-1, 16 points) relieved the team’s first-ever manager, Miguel Angel Ramirez, of his duties and placed the interim tag on Lattanzio during the international break. This came on the heels of a 2-1 road loss to the Seattle Sounders. Charlotte led the match until the 72nd minute.

Lattanzio will be tasked with fixing issues between the players and coaching staff.

“The issue is when you tried to address a problem, most of the times, the door was shut,” team captain Christian Fuchs said. “And that didn’t feel good. … There were certain fractures between the coaching staff and players. … I did not get the sense of Miguel willing to address (the players’) concerns.”

It remains to be seen if Lattanzio will make any groundbreaking changes to the formation or lineup, but Fuchs did note that recent practices have been positive.

“There’s something really good happening right now,” Fuchs said. “Honestly, whoever is going to be out there this weekend is going to (fare well).”

Charlotte will be without starting striker Karol Swiderski due to international duty, and Fuchs and Harrison Afful are both questionable with injury concerns. With Swiderski away from the team, Daniel Rios could move into the starting role between Kamil Jozwiak and Andre Shinyashiki. If Fuchs cannot play on Saturday, Joseph Mora is likely to start at left-back.

The Red Bulls (6-3-5, 23 points) look to continue their stellar away form that has propelled them into fourth place in the Eastern Conference entering action this weekend. New York owns a 5-1-1 record on the road.

The Red Bulls picked up their first home win of the season right before the international break with a 4-1 victory over D.C. United.

Midfielder Luquinhas recorded his first career MLS brace to fuel New York.

“He can create with his passing moments, with his intelligent position, special moments what is not protectable,” coach Gerhard Struber said. “Also he surprised me sometimes when he comes towards and he goes forward and how he works against the ball.”

–Field Level Media