Former Aston Villa boss wins first game in charge of new club

2024 MLS Media Day
2024 MLS Media Day / Rich Storry/GettyImages

Former Aston Villa boss Dean Smith has won his first game in charge of Charlotte FC in the MLS.

The Midlands-born man made the surprise move to America in December.

Smith, 52, is looking to help his new club progress over the next couple of years as they eye some silverware.

He has began life in Charlotte with a win after they beat New York City 1-0 at home on Sunday.

Adilson Malanda scored the only goal of the match in the 8th minute to earn his side all three points to kick-start the 2024 season. They finished 9th in the Eastern Conference last term.

Smith was manager at Aston Villa from 2018 to 2021 and guided them to promotion to the Premier League via the play-offs during his time in the dugout at Villa Park.

He has also managed the likes of Walsall, Brentford, Norwich City and Leicester City in the past.

Smith is excited to be in charge of Charlotte these days and has told their website: "This Club can go on to do really big things. You can see it in the fanbase that we have. You can see it in the infrastructure and the training facility here as well.

"We need to grow the Club; it's only the start of its third season as a professional soccer club, and it has a really big catchment area in both the Carolinas.

"I just get that feeling that everybody is behind it in the Carolinas, and they want some success, and hopefully, we could be the ones to give it that jump."

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