The Independence is a second division team featuring in the Atlantic Division of the USL Championship’s Eastern Conference. The side began competing in 2015 and has qualified for the conference quarterfinals on three occasions.
“Being able to add a player of Christian’s caliber and experience to our roster is a huge win for the Independence,” Independence head coach Mike Jeffries said in a statement. “We are delighted to have him join our group.
“In addition to his on-field experience and ability, Christian is a consummate professional. His quality of play, experience with top clubs, and leadership adds tremendously to our group. I wish to thank Zoran Krneta and the Charlotte FC staff for working with us to bring Christian onto our roster.”
The defender joined Major League Soccer in June after six years with Premier League side Leicester City, where he won the 2015-16 league trophy and the 2020-21 FA Cup.
“This is a great opportunity for Christian, as a former Premier League winner, to maintain both his fitness level and focus in preparation for the start of Charlotte FC’s preseason training in January 2022,” Charlotte FC sporting director Zoran Krneta said.
Charlotte FC players Brandt Bronico and Adam Armour will also play for the Independence for the rest of their 2021 campaign, while midfielders Riley McGree (Birmingham City) and Segio Ruiz (Las Palmas) remain in Europe. Upon returning from their respective teams, they will join newly-appointed head coach Miguel Angel Ramirez for their debut season.