In the buildup to Charlotte FC’s inaugural season, members of the inaugural roster are earning valuable game time with other clubs around the world. From national team debuts to playoff runs, we check in on the progress of our players over the past month…
Jordy Alcivar (LDU Quito)
Charlotte FC’s eighth signing has been preparing for the 2022 campaign with his boyhood club LDU Quito. The 22-year-old midfielder played four matches for the Ecuadorian top flight side in November, helping them rise to fifth spot in the table (the current leaders, incidentally, are Miguel Ángel Ramírez’s former side Independiente del Valle.)
Alcivar’s impact this season has been made clear by Stats Bomb, who note that the Charlotte-bound player leads the Ecuadorian top flight for balls played into the final third:
In early December, Alcivar came to the U.S. with the Ecuador national team, where he made a second-half substitute appearance in the 1-1 friendly draw with El Salvador at Houston Dynamo’s PNC Stadium. The appearance represents his senior debut for the national team.
Adam Armour (Charlotte Independence)
After signing with Charlotte FC from Germany’s FC Nürnberg in June 2020, Adam Armour went on loan with the Charlotte Independence, where he helped them to a historically successful season.
The North Carolina native made 19 regular season appearances, during which he made three assists, before appearing in the Independence’s USL Championship Eastern Atlantic Division playoff victory over Memphis 901.
After the conclusion of the USL season, Armour headed home to Raleigh to continue his preparations for 2022. “I’ve been training with some local collegiate and professional players to stay sharp, and I’ll be making my way back to Charlotte in the next couple weeks,” says Armour.
Brandt Bronico (Charlotte Independence)
During his loan spell with the Independence, midfielder Bronico was virtually ever-present as the local side secured a franchise-best 18-9-5 record in their final USL Championship season.
Bronico played the full 90 in both of the Independence’s playoff games in November, including the narrow 1-0 loss at Louisville City FC.
“I’ve been staying on my grind making sure I’m ready for 2022,” says Bronico. “I am so excited for next season. I feel like the hype has been building up for so long and it’s almost finally here. The announcement of the first two games really made it feel that next season is so close. I can’t wait!”
Uruguayan centre-back Guzman Corujo signed a three-year deal with Charlotte FC in August, and has settled into the Queen City ahead of the 2022 season.
n addition to training, the 25-year-old continues to support the club at community events, such as the recent Tree Lighting at Bank of America Stadium.
Christian Fuchs (Charlotte Independence)
Former Premier League champion Christian Fuchs also played a pivotal role in the Independence’s noteworthy campaign, bringing experience to the back three and scoring twice in 17 appearances in 2021. One of those goals was an opportunistic poacher’s finish from a corner that doubled the Independence’s advantage in their Conference Quarter-final victory over Memphis 901 FC.
Fuchs recently spoke with Give Me Sport about his experiences in the U.S. so far, and his excitement for Charlotte FC’s inaugural season: “I’ve met the manager several times which has been great. We’ve had some very positive meetings, talking about our future playing philosophy, what he demands from his players, things like that. It was all what I was hoping to hear and confirmed to me that we have a really good coaching team in place.”
Riley McGree (Birmingham City)
It’s been a busy month for Charlotte FC’s second-ever signing, who has played a crucial part in the English Championship campaign of his loan side Birmingham City.
The 23-year-old has won plaudits across the Midlands after filling in for injured No.10 Tahith Chong, and put in five appearances for Birmingham through November. At the start of the month, McGree scored the opener in a 3-0 win over Bristol City:
The Puskas Award nominee also represented Australia in two World Cup qualifiers in November, making appearances in the Socceroos’ 1-1 draw against China in the UAE, and the stalemate against Saudi Arabia in Sydney.
Sergio Ruiz (Las Palmas)
After spending two seasons on loan with Spanish second division side Las Palmas, Sergio Ruiz made the brave and admirable decision to prioritize his mental health in November.
Before joining Charlotte FC for its inaugural campaign, the club’s first-ever signing is spending time with family and friends on the northern coast of Spain.
Since arriving in Las Palmas—located on the Canary Islands over 1,500 miles from his hometown—Ruiz made 43 league appearances, and scored five goals as an invaluable part of the team’s central midfield.
Jan Sobocinski (LKS Lodz)
LKS Lodz played their final match of 2021 at the start of December, which brings Jan Sobocinski’s spell with his boyhood club to a close. The Polish second division side paid tribute to the 22-year-old centre-back in honor of his service:
Sobocinski played four games in November, and kept a clean sheet in both of his final two home matches: a 1-0 win over GKS Katowice and a 2-0 victory against Tychy.