Charlotte FC
Charlotte FC
Football Team

Charlotte FC

2019 Charlotte, North Carolina

Charlotte FC was founded in 2019 after David Tepper bought the Carolina Panthers from the NFL in 2018. Their MLS debut was scheduled to happen in the 2021 season, but was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic until 2022. The name "Charlotte Football Club" was chosen by the fans themselves. The official colors (blue, black, silver and white) were also chosen by the fans themselves and to create a synergy with the Carolina Panthers. The shield features a crown as its distinctive symbol. The four-pointed crown pays homage to the Queen City's original namesake, Queen Charlotte. Each of the crown's spires recognizes the four neighborhoods of Uptown Charlotte.

Charlotte FC, or Charlotte Football Club, is the men's professional soccer team based in Charlotte, North Carolina, that competes in Major League Soccer (MLS) as a member of the Eastern Conference beginning in the 2022 season. The founding of the club and its short, but significant history, underscores the growing popularity and development of soccer in the United States, especially in new cities joining the league.

A new MLS powerhouse

Charlotte FC's story began with an expansion bid submitted by NFL Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper in 2019. Tepper, who had previously shown interest in bringing an MLS team to Charlotte, led a campaign that culminated with the franchise being officially awarded to the city on December 17, 2019 during an event at the Mint Museum. The expansion was notable not only for the high cost of the fee, reported to be close to $325 million, but also for the strong local support that manifested itself in the sale of 7,000 season ticket deposits in the first 24 hours after the announcement. However, the COVID-19 pandemic forced a postponement of the team's entry into the league until 2022.

The birth of an identity

Charlotte FC's identity was established with the unveiling of its name, crest and primary colors in July 2020. The club's crest, inspired by a classic coin, honors Charlotte's modern status as a major U.S. financial center and its history as the first U.S. city with a branch of the U.S. Mint. The four-pointed crown in the center of the shield symbolizes the royal legacy behind the city's name, nicknamed "The Queen City" in honor of Queen Charlotte Sophia of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. The team colors are Carolina blue, black, silver and white, representing the identity and spirit of the region.

First steps on the field

Charlotte FC's inaugural season in 2022 was filled with historic moments, from the signing of its first player, Spanish midfielder Sergio Ruiz, to making its MLS debut with a match against D.C. United. Although the team lost its first official match, it set an MLS attendance record for a home debut against the LA Galaxy, with 74,479 spectators. This massive support demonstrated the Charlotte community's enthusiasm and passion for their new team.

Charlotte FC's home stadium is Bank of America Stadium, the same stadium used by the Carolina Panthers in the NFL and with a capacity of more than 75 spectators. However, the Charlotte FC team will only use a capacity of 40,000 fans for MLS matches. The stadium received a heavy investment from the North Carolina government to adapt it.

Spaniard Miguel Angel Ramirez became the first coach in the history of Charlotte FC. Miguel Ángel won the 2019 Copa Sudamericana with Independiente del Valle.