Donatelli facing familiar opponent

Charleston midfielder Tony Donatelli has a goal and an assist in four games for the Battery.

Donatelli, however, has a history of making his former employers pay.

After playing for Vancouver for three seasons and helping lead the Whitecaps to a USL Division I title in 2006, Donatelli was traded to the Montreal Impact in 2008. Donatelli got a bit of revenge against his old club when he scored on a penalty kick for Montreal against Vancouver in the 2009 USL-1 title game in a 3-1 victory over the Whitecaps.

“It’s always nice to show your former team what they might be missing out on,” Donatelli said.

Charleston coach Mike Anhaeuser was quick to sign Donatelli when Rochester passed on the chance.

“Tony has been on our radar since he was playing with Montreal,” Anhaeuser said. “We tried to get him back then, but it wasn’t the right time. Fortunately for us, this year we were able to work things out.”

With the departure of fan favorite Stephen Armstrong, the Battery needed a veteran presence at the outside midfield position.

“He’s a versatile guy that can play three or four different positions,” Anhaeuser said. “He has the quality to bring out the best in other players. He’s a good passer and he can finish around the net. Tony might not get five chances a game because he’s not the fastest guy on the field, but if he gets one, he’ll put it away.”

Donatelli has been around championship teams before and sees some of the same qualities in the Battery that he saw in both Vancouver and Montreal.

“I see a lot of promise and potential on this team,” Donatelli said. “There are some young guys that are very hungry and some great leaders on this team. I see a good mixture of younger guys and veterans and a lot of skill. I think this is a team that can compete for a championship.”