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Join us for the Footy Awards Nominations Announcement!
With Special Guests Jaylin Lindsey, Jessica Charman, Danny Brams, Steve Goldberg, and more!
Join Us for The Footy Awards!
It's time for The First Annual Footy Awards, this Sunday, November 12 at 7:00 PM EST on Zoom and YouTube.
On this nomination show, our team of experts will select the final Footy Awards ballot from your nominations, and we'll email you with the final ballot to select outstanding local, national, and international players as well as fans and volunteers in the local soccer ecosystem.
Special thanks to our partners The Charlotte Post and Queen City Football Chronicle, as well as our expert panel of Charlotte FC player Jaylin Lindsey, WFNZ and SiriusXM's Jessica Charman, Daniel Bramlette from the Charlotte Soccer Show, and Steve Goldberg from The Charlotte Post and QCFC.
Lattanzio Out as Charlotte FC Coach
On Wednesday morning, Charlotte FC head coach Christian Lattanzio was unexpectedly sacked.
We say “unexpected” because of the timing - in soccer, when a manager gets the axe, it’s usually at the end of a team’s season. Also, after St. Louis City SC’s playoff faceplant, we thought Lattanzio might get some grace - being a new team in the MLS is hard!
I wrote about the reasons behind the move for Queen City Nerve:
The move was “a holistic decision,” according to a source with knowledge of the club’s thinking. While the club is “happy they made the playoffs” they “think there’s more out there.”
“The club felt [Lattanzio] maxed out what he can do at their club,” said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity so they could speak candidly.
Factors considered included the team dropping points late in matches, Lattanzio’s practice of playing players out of position, the team’s style of play, and the perception that Charlotte FC’s fanbase had soured on Lattanzio.
“I’d be lying if I said [fan disapproval] didn’t factor into this,” said the source, but it was “not the main reason.”
To his credit, Lattanzio was dealt one of the roughest hands one can imagine for a first-time head coach: he came in during a team’s first year to coach a club without a clear identity. He had to navigate the death of Anton Walkes in the preseason and the fallout from that on and off the pitch. He had to field a team with a large chunk of payroll taken up by Andre Shinyashiki and Nuno Santos, who would never play for the team again.
Once the team got through its painful start and made it to the Leagues Cup, things really started to click, and the impressive work at Crown Legacy FC bore fruits Lattanzio was happy to use.
However, Charlotte could have finished higher in the table, and the team’s habit of losing points from winning position is probably what did Lattanzio in. Charlotte dropped a lot of late points: likely enough that they could have finished 7th or higher and avoided a sudden death play-in match. Perhaps Lattanzio’s inexperience making in-game decisions was to blame; perhaps it was a complex system that didn’t adapt to hold leads.
Either way, our take is that the Lattanzio era should be remembered for triumph over adversity, and the joy of two enjoyable first seasons. Thanks Coach, and best wishes in your travels.
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Programming Alert: NWSL Finals Tonight
Tonight will be Megan Rapinoe’s final professional match. If that’s not enough of a reason to tune in, her OL Reign squad from Seattle will face off with Gotham FC in the NWSL finals - meaning Pinoe could bring home one last trophy.
The finals will be broadcast at 8:00 PM tonight, November 11, on CBS.