Update: Charlotte FC loads up with international signings

Charlotte FC, which will begin its first MLS season in 2022, signed Croatian goalkeeper Kristijan Kahlina from Bulgarian champion Ludogorets Razgrad to a contract until 2024 with an option for 2025.

The 29-year-old goalkeeper started 10 of 17 Bulgarian league games this season as well as 14 of 16 games in the UEFA Champions League qualifying and Europa League group stage.

He is the ninth player Charlotte FC has signed to occupy an international roster slot on its inaugural roster. It has traded for three more international roster slots it give it 11 in 2022. MLS allows teams to have eight international players in addition to an unlimited number of players who hold green-cards.

The international players represent eight different countries: Australia, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Poland, Spain and Uruguay in addition to Croatia. Charlotte FC also has green-card holders from Austria, Costa Rica, England and Ghana. Goalkeeper Pablo Sisniega was born and raised in Mexico but also holds U.S. and German citizenship.

Goalkeepers (2): *Kristijan Kahlina (Ludogorets Razgrad/BUL, transfer), Pablo Sisniega (LAFC, trade).
Defenders (8): Harrison Afful (Columbus Crew, free agent), Adam Armour (Nuremberg/GER, free agent), *Guzman Corujo (Nacional/URU, free agent), Christian Fuchs (Leicester City, free agent), Jaylin Lindsey (Sporting KC, trade), Joseph Mora (D.C. United, Expansion Draft), *Jan Sobociski (LKS Lodz/POL, transfer), Anton Walkes (Atlanta United, Expansion Draft).
Midfielders (5): *Jordy Alcívar (LDU Quito/ECU, transfer), Brandt Bronico (Chicago Fire, free agent), *Alan Franco (Atlético Mineiro/BRA, loan), *Riley McGree (Adelaide United/AUS, transfer), *Sergio Ruiz (Racing Santander/ESP, transfer).
Forwards (3): McKinze Gaines (Austin FC, Expansion Draft), *Vinicius Mello (Internacional/BRA, U22 Initiative), *Yordy Reyna (D.C. United, free agent).
*Will occupy international roster slot.
Note: Charlotte FC, which has signed nine players to international roster slots, acquired three to give them 11 in 2022.)

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5 comments about "Update: Charlotte FC loads up with international signings".
  1. Guy Walling, December 29, 2021 at 5:37 p.m.

    Wow 9 newly signed international players...what does that say about our US academy's ability, or for that matter college programs to develop US youth players? This is just another example of the MLS not having faith in their own home grown plays and young college players. Where is all this money going? You mean to tell me from 28 academies and 230 Div 1 schools supposedly developing players, Charlotte FC couldn't draft one 18 year old from one of these domestic systems?

  2. David Browne replied, December 29, 2021 at 5:50 p.m.

    For that matter, it's 10 or more. Anton Walkes is English, but MLS doesn't count him as an international player because he acquired a green card while playing for Atlanta United. Don't know if there are any others like him on the roster.

  3. Ric Fonseca, December 30, 2021 at 4:04 p.m.

    Guy Walling:  I couldn't agree with you more!!!  For all of the money MLS teams spend to bring in what they "consider top foreign players" for transportation, lodging, bonuses, and of course salaries plus whatever their agents conjure up to managers, and of course to pad their "agent fees" (many not paid by the players, but fees are added on when players finally sign it is utterly pathetic to continually see the MLS literally turn their back on the local-home grown products!  Is it no wonder, then, why some teams are just lounging around and then moan and grown regarding their low game-day attendance?  And this also goes for the signing of foreign team coaches, assistants, and whatnot (oh, I forgot that one area they do "crecuit from" is the sports medicine staffers, trainirs, PTs, orthopaedic docs, etc. as it "seems" that we have some sort of "lock" in this profession - what with the myriad of pro, semi pro, amateur, collegiate, scholastic teams that abound...!) 
    So, Mr. Walling, your comments are spot on.  Oh and by the way, why hasn't the paying supporters of the LAFC been informed where they are in the signing of their new coach?  Rumor has it that Landon Donovan is "interested" and yet, the preseason schedule is almost right around the corner.  Any thoughts on this LAFC coaching vacancy?  anyone....? 

  4. Bob Ashpole, January 1, 2022 at 7:57 a.m.

    Of the 8 mids and forwards listed 6 are non-resident aliens.

    The problem is that MLS/USSF now has almost no restriction on fielding sides of foreign players. Every team is allowed 8 non-resident alien players plus an unlimited number of resident aliens. No wonder players eligible for the USMNT are uncommonly seen on the field.

    I suspect that MLS owners think that foreign names on the shirts (and lots of goals) will attract fans who watch European soccer. That thinking would be a sad indictment of US fans.

    What would attract me is a club that played good attacking soccer in a league that enforced the Laws and punished thug soccer. 

  5. Guy Walling, January 2, 2022 at 9:22 a.m.

    Ric and Bob if only we had a voice within MLS soccer! If only the fans had a voice! 

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