Will the queen city rivalry with Cincinnati be bought over from the USL?
Charlotte and Cincinnati: A Tale of Two Queen Cities by Ryan Bailey
CHARLOTTE — From the moment of its inception, Charlotte MLS has had a de facto rival. “Screw that city!” proclaimed David Tepper on the podium at the team’s announcement, referring to Atlanta and its eminently successful soccer franchise.
Soccer clubs are often defined by local rivalries, and Charlotte MLS has certainly laid down the gauntlet with its neighbor down I-85.
Not all soccer rivalries, however, are based on proximity. Real Madrid and Barcelona, for example, play their home matches nearly 400 miles apart, and are bitter rivals due to their battle for supremacy in Spain. In the Premier League, distant foes Crystal Palace and Brighton contest the “Eagle-Seagull derby” due to a feud between their respective coaches in the 1970s.
Charlotte MLS will also have a predetermined non-local rival when it starts play in 2021, as the city shares a nickname with Cincinnati: both are known as “The Queen City.”
Interesting to see what Charlotte’s stadium will look like if they really install some form of safe standing. If they do it well, could they set the precedent for clubs like Seattle and Atlanta to do the same?