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Match Preview: Charlotte Independence

It seems like it has been forever since we’ve seen Louisville City play at home! This time we welcome Charlotte Independence to Slugger Field. This is usually a pretty entertaining game. Let’s look at the keys to the game for each team.

Charlotte:

Charlotte is coming off a 2-2 draw with Tampa Bay Rowdies. Charlotte will look to keep the late equalizer that Tampa had out of the net this time.  

The first key to the game is to continue to win the possession battle. The game will be won in the midfield, as LCFC like possession ball as well. They will need to control the midfield like they did against Tampa Bay.

The second key will be to continue to attack from the back. Last week, Independence defenders scored twice in a time span of less than 10 minutes. In soccer, most defenders are not as the clinical type, so this is good news for Charlotte, as most of their goals have come from defenders and midfielders rather than forwards. Look for them to attack the flanks and do it as often as they can.

The Final key for Charlotte is to continue their run of form. They are 3-1-1 in their last five games and have games in hand over those ahead of them in the standings. This Charlotte team will not go easily by the wayside.

Louisville CityP

What a game they had against Charleston. Many people are saying “who said this team can’t score!?” We had the soccer gods on our side that game. Lucky deflections and an own goal gave us the result. However, I agree with the people in the “who said they cannot score” camp. Great goals often come with taking chances like LCFC did.

The first key to this Charlotte match is to get the lineup figured out. A fairly consistent lineup means players continue to know what the other will do in a certain game scenario. Too often have we switched the lineup on game day. Injuries and the like have plagued us early, so it is understandable, but it needs to be resolved when all are healthy.

The second key is allowing more attacking options on the field. It seems as though that killer instinct lacks up front as our strikers have been almost nonexistent through our first few games. Maybe it’s the early season jitters as Cameron Lancaster, Luke Spencer, and Ilia Illic actually get a chance after playing second fiddle the last two seasons. However, this is a dilemma that needs to be solved soon, as all three are good players, with each offering something unique we can use in different games.

The final key to the game will be to get the defense more involved in the attack. It seems like Kyle Smith and Oscar Jimenez aren’t getting as involved as they did in the early games through April. This was a big part of our attack the last two seasons and we need to continue it. 

Prediction: 2-0 

LCFC had a fairly successful road trip going 2-2-1 including the US Open Cup games. I expect the team will be happy to come home and they will be ready to entertain us. Look for Charlotte to attack early, then taking it slow before trying to get a result if they can’t slide in a goal in early. City will need to get a W here as the less draws we have the better as we try to close the gap on the top with games in hand. We need all 9 points in the next 3 games if we want to close the gap.  LOUISVILLE CITY HERE WE GO!