|Charlotte FC 'working on some options' in MLS transfer window|
|Club open to roster additions by Oct. 29|
|Published Saturday, September 26, 2020 3:19 pm|
|PHOTO | ASHLEY MAHONEY|
|Charlotte FC President Tom Glick (center) talks to Johnson C. Smith President Clarence Armbrister Saturday during the Million Mask Initiative, a collaboration between JCSU, the Carolina Panthers and Atrium Health.|
The period for player signings runs through Oct. 29, but Charlotte’s only move came in July during the first transfer window when they signed Spanish midfielder Sergio Ruiz. He has since been sent on an 18-month loan with Las Palmas of Spain’s second division.
“We’re working on some options there,” Charlotte FC President Tom Glick said. “As we look at this window and the four windows there are between now and kickoff in 2022, we’re looking to take advantage of all of these as we build our new soccer club.”
While Charlotte has made additions to the academy side, bringing on Karyn Latorre as head athletic trainer and Devon Manifold as head of performance. The question remains, will Charlotte soon sign another player to join Ruiz on the inaugural roster?
Glick represented the Carolina Panthers Saturday at an Atrium Health mask distribution event at Johnson C. Smith as part of the Million Mask Initiative. In addition to helping distribute over 20,000 masks, Glick spoke to how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted building Charlotte FC from scratch, along with their inaugural season being pushed to 2022 due to the pandemic.
“We’re going with the flow,” he said. “We have more time now. The timeline now goes to March of 2022, so we have 18 months before we kickoff. People are still remote from each other, so we don’t have big gatherings of people in pubs watching games together, but there’s other ways for us to connect with soccer fans.
“Soccer of course, in Major League Soccer and around the world, is playing again. In some cases with a few fans, but certainly on television, so soccer fans are watching. There’s youth soccer going on around the area. We’re safely engaging with soccer players and soccer fans and building more and more excitement about the club, and the [season ticket] deposit numbers continue to grow, which is fun. We’re getting ready for our facility renovations at Bank of America Stadium, so everything is right on schedule.”
Charlotte’s academy arm is up and running, participating in the inaugural MLS NEXT competition, which started this month with U-17 and U-14 teams. More age groups will be added as things progress.“As we get into 2021, you’ll see us have one or two more age groups, and probably finishing with five or six different age groups giving more and more young players the chance to develop their skills and find a pathway to be a pro,” Glick said. “These training sessions and these games that the young players are part of right now are a big part of them building their skills and building their careers as a professional football player.”
Glick said Charlotte FC is following COVID-19 protocols from Atrium Health, MLS and the NFL to keep players safe while training and playing games.
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