CHARLOTTE – In their last match against New York City FC, Charlotte FC had to throw away their initial game plan when they went down to 10 men because of a red card. The Crown proved in that game that they are capable of winning dirty which was another step in the team’s growth.
“Yeah, it's very important that the team believes that they can get results in different ways,” said interim head coach Christian Lattanzio. “We, as an identity, I said many times, we want to be the team that tries to play as high as possible on the pitch but sometimes that's not possible for the quality of the opposition or we might go down to 10 men. So, it becomes more difficult. To have the belief that you can also play and survive in those conditions is very important.”
When Lattanzio was asked how he defines success for Charlotte FC, he defined it as seeing progress in establishing the Club’s identity.
“Success, obviously is always related to result, right? Especially in professional football, when you win you have success, when you don't win you don't have success. But I think that there are different things to take into consideration and we're not trying to find any excuse at all, but when you are a new club, a new franchise, I think that the most important thing is to see progress.
“Because if you want to have your own identity, if you want to really have sustainability, to your success, or to your team, you need to have a clear way of doing things. And so for me, success is also to see progress in the way that we want to play. And to see the players understanding and executing more and more what we want to do.
“To establish a clear identity for Charlotte. Basically for us, what we want to see is that when people see Charlotte FC, they see they see a clear brand of football which is aligned with the trend of how football is played at the highest level.”
Looking ahead to the Chicago Fire, they’re a team that has won just once in their past seven matches, most recently losing 2 – 3 to C.F. Montreal. Despite their form and potential fatigue from their midweek match, Lattanzio stresses that Chicago will be a tough match and that CLTFC will need to be at their best to earn a result.
“Given the fact that they will play a home, I think it kind of levels things out. They are a team that like us is fighting to win as many games as possible to try to have a chance at playoffs. They improved a lot in the second part of the season and so we think that it is going to be a hard game.
“We will go there with our conviction, our beliefs, the like we said before, in our mini-season, we want to keep going as strong as we can. We know he's gonna be a tough game but we want it to be a tough game for them.”