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MARCH TO THE MATCH: CHARLOTTE INDEPENDENCE

SEEK AND FIND: Where’s the soccer ball?

by Taylor Sorrels (@taylorsorrels)

Just because the world’s most famous outdoor orgy horse race is happening on Saturday doesn’t mean you aren’t morally obligated to support Louisville City FC. Get your drinking boots on, put on something purple, and get educated about **looks up schedule** Charlotte Independence? Charlotte Independence.

WHEN: Derby Day. 7:00 PM.

WHO: Charlotte Independence. 2 points, 0-2-2. Charlotte’s another first year USL team that seemed to appear out of thin air. Re-inhabiting the old Charlotte Eagles’ corpse, a morbid weirdo might say.

WHAT: Louisville City’s third road game of the season, and probably their best chance to pick up three points away yet.

WHERE: Somewhere in Charlotte, North Carolina. Maybe. A little background:

The Independence at one point said they’d be playing at American Legion Memorial Stadium which, at present, is closed. Then, earlier this year, they announced they would play at something called Ramblewood Soccer Complex. Hasn’t happened. Their Wikipedia page says they’re supposed to be playing games at UNC-Charlotte’s soccer facility. Nope. Clearly, this is a club that has it together. So far in USL play, they’ve played 2 home games at Transamerica Field, also on UNC-Charlotte’s campus, where the 49ers football team plays. They’re playing Richmond on Winthrop’s campus in Rock Hill on May 8.

Transamerica Field is where Louisville City’s supposed to set up shop on Saturday night, pending further instructions. Sorry if you’d planned on going, as it appears you can’t buy booze at the game. Ugh.

BROADCAST: 

REFS: Might as well start learning these people’s names so we know whom we are accosting at the next home game. REF: JEREMY SMITH. AR1: Mark Buda. AR2: Kevin Roberts 4TH: Derek “Bro” Ambrozaitis. I made the “Bro” part up because of Rob Lowe and DirecTV. I bet Derek’s always getting called Bro, Bro. You know?

WHO, AGAIN?: The Charlotte Independence. I already told you that. And I’ve already made fun of their nickname, which is something I kind of think they probably had to explain to their own fans before anyone understood what it meant.

But back to Charlotte’s soccer team. They’ve got a few guys on the league’s All Name team, including backup GK Diego Restrepo, and former UofL player Paolo Del Piccolo. Another former Cardinal playing for Charlotte is Marlon Hairston,  on loan from the Independence’s MLS affiliate, Colorado Rapids. Looking at this picture, it looks like he’d much rather be back in Colorado for a variety of reasons, both medicinal and professional. Their leading goalscorer is #9 Ryan Finley with 2 deposits this year, and their starting keeper is a Colorado loanee named John Berner. They do seem to like to shoot a lot, with 48 shots in 4 games, but they’ve only got four goals on the season to show for it. I don’t expect Scot-ty Good-win to make it five.

SUPPORTERS: Charlotte’s supporters group went along with the Revolutionary War theme and call themselves Jack’s Militia after Captain James Jack, who is not a basketball player for the Brooklyn Nets. Heaven knows we need more military terms associated with soccer supporters, just not enough of those.

PRE-GAME TWEET GAME: Not really worth commenting on. They’re *so above* trash talk, apparently.

STATISTICAL COMPARISONS OF DUBIOUS VALIDITY:

Paul Revere Wannabes Purple Badasses
Goals For 4 7
Goals Against 8 3
Shots Water, I guess? MINT JULEPS WOOOOO
Total Shots Ratio 0.60 0.52
Points per Game 0.50 1.80
Save % 47.7 ouch 85.7
ExpG No one at USL does this and I’m not going to start.

 

WEATHER: Whatever it’s like wherever it is you’re watching the broadcast on YouTube, man. Since you’re probably leaving your Derby party early to go watch the game at Against the Grain, you can be inside OR outside. Always nice to have options.

 

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