The Magic City is in for a historic soccer matchup on Wednesday evening. The hometown Birmingham Legion have fought their way to the Round of 16 in the U.S. Cup, and will be hosting Charlotte FC at Protective Stadium. The game brings an MLS Division I opponent to Birmingham - not just for an exhibit or practice game, but with real stakes on the line. The game takes place at 7pm, and a buzz is building throughout the city in the days leading up to this major league showdown.

The Legion are one of only two Division II teams that have made it to the Round of 16, joining Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC as the two aspiring underdogs in this tournament that lets teams from lower divisions earn their way to compete with MLS opponents. The team fought hard to be able to host their MLS opponent in a home matchup, beating USL Championship opponent Memphis 901 FC 3-0 in the Round of 32. If the Legion win on Wednesday, they will once again be the home team in the Round of 8 against the winner of Inter Miami CF and Nashville SC. 

This big moment comes a decade after Birmingham first formed a team as the Birmingham Hammers before the team became professional and became the Legion FC in 2018. They’ve built a loyal local following in the Magic City Brigade and are engraved in the community on everything from community events to appearances on Birmingham Mountain Radio. They are now preparing for what is being called “the biggest game in club history”. 

This exciting showdown comes with a full season ahead for the Legion and the inaugural season of the Legion Women’s team, who is already off to a hot start. Hammer down! 

Cover image from Birmingham Legion FC