Charlotte Independence 0, Richmond Kickers 0
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – (Saturday, March 18, 2023) — The Richmond Kickers (0-1-0) earned a hard-fought point on the road at fellow 2022 USL League One playoff team, Charlotte Independence (0-1-0), to open the 2023 USL League One season, Saturday night.
Akira Fitzgerald made history when he stepped out onto the pitch becoming the first player in league history to reach 100 regular-season appearances. The iron man between the pipes marked the occasion with his first clean sheet of the season.
In front of Fitzgerald was a Richmond backline that picked up where it left off last season when it conceded the second-fewest goals in the league. Despite Charlotte attempting 16 shots, the Kickers limited the Jacks to only four on target and Fitzgerald was there to keep the net clear.
Defense was a team effort for the Roos as midfielder Justin Sukow tied defender Michael Hornsby with four tackles won apiece which led the team.
Meanwhile, the Kickers dictated the flow of the match, earning nearly 56 percent possession.
Nil Vinyals delivered the Kickers’ best scoring opportunity of the match in the 22nd minute. Hornsby gathered the ball on the left wing before passing it off to the Spaniard who cut in toward the box. Vinyals darted through three defenders, running parallel to the goalline, before cutting a shot back towards the near post that required the Charlotte goalkeeper to make a diving save.
The Kickers return to RVA for a week of training before heading back to Greenville, S.C. to face Triumph SC for the second match of the season on March 25 at 7 p.m.
The Roos then prepare for their home opener at City Stadium on April 1 at 6 p.m. when they will host Independence for a rematch. It will be during the match against Independence that the Kickers will debut their 2023 primary jersey, The Red Night Kit.
Tickets for the match are still available but are selling fast. For a cost as low as $10 per match, Kickers fans can save the most with Season Tickets while unlocking exclusive perks and experiences. With one additional regular season match and two new opponents joining USL League One in 2023, City Stadium will be the place to be! Additional information can be found at richmondkickers.com/seasontickets.
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