North Carolina FC announced on Tuesday the club had transferred 18-year-old goalkeeper Nick Holliday to Charlotte FC of Major League Soccer. | Photo courtesy Zach Taft / North Carolina FC
CARY, N.C. – North Carolina FC announced on Tuesday the club had transferred 18-year-old goalkeeper Nicholas Holliday to Charlotte FC of Major League Soccer via transfer ahead of the 2024 season. The transaction is pending league and federation approval, and includes an undisclosed transfer fee, and potential future compensation for both performance and transfer fees.
The historic transfer will mark the first direct move of a North Carolina FC player to a club that guarantees an MLS First Team contract. Holliday, who signed his first professional contract with North Carolina FC in 2021 at 15 years old and made his senior debut that season, will begin a three-year, guaranteed MLS contract starting in the 2025 season, following one campaign with Crown Legacy FC of MLS NEXT Pro.
Developed through the NCFC Academy, Holliday has been the brightest example for the club’s Youth to Pro model, bridging youth, academy, and professional soccer in the Triangle.
“We are thrilled Nick and his family have this opportunity for the next step in his career,” said North Carolina FC Head Coach and Sporting Director Jon Bradford. “We begin this journey at the club when Nick was 12 years old, and I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with him over the last six years.
“I genuinely thank Nick and his family for their trust and belief in our club’s pathway that has helped him mature into the player he is today. He is a talented, hardworking, and high-character young man that dedicates himself to his craft for this next step for Nick and wish him all the best going forward.”
Holliday’s opportunities to train and learn in a professional environment, both with NCFC and overseas on trials at clubs such as PSV Eindhoven in the Netherlands, Fortuna Dusseldorf, Bayern Leverkusen and Hertha Berlin in Germany, exponentially accelerated his growth as a goalkeeper. Since his debut in 2021, Holliday made 26 appearances for NCFC in USL League One. This past campaign, he had recorded three shutouts in 13 appearances to help North Carolina sit atop the USL League One table for much of the season before a season-ending injury.
Nick Holliday’s move to Charlotte FC serves as another landmark for North Carolina FC’s Academy development system with the talented young goalkeeper getting the chance to remain close to home as he builds on what was set to be a breakout campaign before a broken tibia ended his season prematurely for the League One title winners.
Holliday has shown tremendous growth in his three seasons between the sticks in the professional ranks so far, and that trajectory is likely to not only carry him into regular top-flight minutes in the future but potentially into the U.S. Men’s National Team picture. The next goal for Holliday should be to earn regular minutes and a regular place in the upcoming United States U-20 Men’s National Team cycle in addition to putting together a strong first campaign for his new club.