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It was a tough weekend for Charlotte FC fans, as the Club dropped an important three points at home to Chicago Fire FC in the race for Eastern Conference playoff spots. The result certainly wasn’t ideal, but CLTFC winger McKinze Gaines felt that it was a performance the team can build on while speaking to media on Tuesday.

“We had film earlier today and I think we’re all on the same page that it was a game that was there to be won. They had a few opportunities that they took, and we had a few that we didn’t, but I think it’s a game we can build on.

“All in all, we obviously would have loved to get the three points, but it’s not a game to be disappointed about. It’s a game we can put behind us and keep working on things we need to work on.”

While none of the players Charlotte FC signed on Deadline Day last week will be available to play on the road against LAFC this Saturday, all three – Nuno Santos, Nathan Byrne, and Adilson Malanda – are busy integrating with the squad and hoping to provide a spark to the season.

Gaines thinks that they will have no problem getting up to speed quickly.

“I think that we’ve shown that we’re a team that can hit the ground running. All the players that are on the team now were new at some point in the season and you see the way that we’re competing and the way that we’ve grown together and the way that we work together on the field.

“So, I have no doubts that the new guys will integrate into the squad just as fast as guys have in the past and they’ll help us moving forward.”

After a run of games at Bank of America Stadium, CLTFC now heads into a road trip with games against LAFC and New York City FC. Playing away in MLS is notoriously tough even without mentioning the fact that LAFC lead the way in the Supporters’ Shield race with NYCFC close behind.

However, Gaines stressed the importance of the team’s winning mentality and belief regardless of opponent.

“I think that no matter who we play against, the goal is to get three points. We’ve played against good teams this season and, obviously, LAFC is a good team. So, they have some good players and have made some good signings this summer, but that doesn’t change our mentality going forward in how we approach the game.

“We’ll approach it just like we approach any other game – striving to win and get those crucial three points on the road.”