When you’re in doubt, it seems that Charlotte is going to get a draw. Match 8 against Colorado Rapids was at home at the Bank and we managed to fumble the 3 points at the very end.
Coach Larranzio made a couple of changes following the 3-1 loss against Real Salt Lake. Joseph Mora made his second start of the season over Jaylin Lindsey in the back line, as Harrison Afful moved to the right-back. Kerwin Varagas was on his normal left-wing side of the pitch while Karol Świderski was pushed back into the midfield. Lastly, Brand Bronico got the start over Ben Bender in the day’s encounter.
There were no changes in the formation with Coach Larranzio sticking with his normal 4-3-3:
The first half for Charlotte was a very typical first half, as Charlotte owned the possession stats (58% to 42%) and completed more accurate passes (196 to the Rapids’ 116). Charlotte was be able to get more shots (9 to 6) but other than that it was a pretty normal 0-0 half for this club.
The second half was a tad bit different for Charlotte. Charlotte got beat from a statistical standpoint, with the possession going to Rapids (53% to 47%). While Charlotte was able to get more total shots (8 to 7), Rapids would get more shots on goal (6 to 3).
The Rapids finally got their breakthrough through the buildup between Yapi, Rubio, and Nicholson. Nicholson took on his defender and split the defense with a ball in the middle towards Max, who would put it away in the back of the net in the 53rd minute.
Charlotte’s breakthrough in the match would come from Afful. Afful gave the ball up to Świderski, who then laid the ball off at the top of the box for Vargas. Vargas was able to slot one into the bottom right corner to bring the game level at 1-1.
Charlotte’s next goal would come from our Polish duo. Świderski crossed the ball from the edge of the box for fellow Pole Jóźwiak, who leaped over his defender to head it in, putting Charlotte up in the 64th Minute of the match.
Just when you think Charlotte had 3 points secured. in the 91st minute, Colorado’s Michael Barrios had an open net to equalize. George Marks rushed out of his goal in what appeared to be a routine stop, but just failed to hold on to the ball.
The match ended in a 2-2 draw.
- I don’t think there’s much to be said this week. We were unlucky to get a result that wasn’t in our favor. For 26 minutes we were able to hold them off and all it took was a goalkeeper error for them to equalize. That’s football for you, though, and all it takes is one opportunity for a team to change the result.
- Coach Larranzio needs the team to get into that extra gear and get goals in bunches more often, as they did between the first and second goals. It can show dominance in the match.
- Charlotte needs to be able to adjust between being able to play counter-attacking and possession-based football. Possession is great, but it hasn’t gotten us many positive results and there is a need to be able to tweak the philosophy. This includes just sitting there, building off of the counter, and letting the ball work for you.
- The defense has improved, or at least it did in this matchup. I would like for them not to ball-watch so often. They should be scanning their zones better and communicating more with each other. The first goal was conceded because there was no communication between the defenders, which left gaps for our players to cover and spaces for the Rapids to exploit. It led to a simple cross and tap in.
- Rapids Goals: 1:38-1:47, 5:45- 5:55
- Charlotte FC Goals: 2:33-2:44, 3:24-3:34