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Permalink - Posted on 2019-03-14 16:00, modified at 18:42
La Liga giants Real Betis of Seville, Spain will visit Chattanooga FC Saturday, May 25th (Memorial Day weekend) as part of the International Exhibition Series Powered by EPB. This will be the first time Betis has played in the US.
“This is an incredible opportunity for our players to match up against some of the world’s best players,” said Sheldon Grizzle, President, Chattanooga FC. “Betis is one of Europe’s most storied clubs and soccer fans throughout the Southeast will now have a unique chance to see them up close in Chattanooga. Bringing the world’s game to Chattanooga has long been in our DNA and we are honored to offer this to our fans, players, and coaching staff.”
Real Betis was established in 1907, and over the last century they have won 12 Spanish championships and played in numerous Europa and Champions League matches. Betis is known for bringing talented internationals to their team including current Mexican National Team captain Andrés Guardado and 18 year old Mexican phenom Diego Lainez.
“Chattanooga FC is a young club with a lot of potential and great interest on expanding on the US soccer market” said Ramon Alarcon, Real Betis General Manager. “It will be a fantastic opportunity for Real Betis Balompie to play in the central Southeast market with a large Spanish speaking community. We are excited to enjoy the atmosphere at the Finley Stadium on the 25th of May.”
Bill Elliott, Head Coach and General Manager, of Chattanooga FC remarked, “We are blessed to compete against a major club from La Liga like Real Betis. Chattanooga FC coaches, players and supporters look forward to another opportunity to showcase our team and our city.”
Tickets for the Memorial Day weekend match are now on sale on the Chattanooga FC website and are $30 in advance, $40 the day of the game. This match is INCLUDED for season pass holders.
The organizers are expecting a big crowd for the match so fans are encouraged to get tickets get your tickets and season passes early!
Worldwide, soccer builds community, shapes culture, develops talent and unites diverse peoples. Chattanooga Football Club for ten years has helped the same to happen in Chattanooga, creating true opportunity for all players and a great experience for all fans. Chattanooga Football Club is a member team of the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL), which is sanctioned by the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) as an affiliate of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF). In August, the club will enter the inaugural Founders Cup ahead of a full season in 2020.
Permalink - Posted on 2019-03-09 15:30, modified at 15:36
The Chattanooga Football Club is putting together the pieces of the puzzle for what it hopes to be a memorable 11th year of existence.
Determined to build a wall in front of the net, the soccer team has added recent collegiate star Nathaniel Bedai to the back line.
With a mixture of strong closing speed, aggressive slide-tackling and agile footwork, Bedai was the 2018 Southern States Athletic Conference defensive player of the year and earned NAIA All-American honorable mention. The Ghana native closed out his collegiate career helping the University of Mobile post seven shutouts and allow just 0.65 goals per game last season.
"Nathaniel is a very humble and hard-working guy," CFC coach Bill Elliott said. "He is a no-nonsense defender who we think our fans will fall in love with. He likes to challenge people and tackle. He is simple with the ball and a very smart player."
Bedai is the first newcomer among CFC's nine players announced for the 2019 season.
Permalink - Posted on 2019-02-27 18:56, modified at 21:01
There is a lot of attention surrounding soccer in the Chattanooga region these days. With this increased focus, we’ve been asked a lot of questions about our future plans for youth soccer and hope this helps you understand our perspective on things.
Chattanooga FC (CFC) was born in 2009 out of a love for our city and a love of soccer. And when we spearheaded the founding of CFCA in 2012, we did it for one reason: to unify the youth soccer community to better serve our children. Among our board members, we have coached at the college, travel, and recreation levels, so we have experienced the good, bad, and ugly of youth soccer.
In recent years, CFCA has experienced success in areas that we believe are essential to building the foundation of CFCA culture. The launch of our IDP program for pre-select players has added energy to the culture and development on which CFCA can grow on. Also, steps have been taken to further educate our coaches and work towards building curriculums under a consistent focus and philosophy. Creating this groundwork is the start to developing a culture that can also produce consistent results. Over the last two years alone, CFCA has experienced some landmark moments like winning three D1 state championships and have seen nearly 50 players sign to play college soccer.
Despite CFCA’s recent success, we recognize that we can be much better. For a full-service club like CFCA, there needs to be more consistency in coaching culture and philosophies, higher quality and quantity of communication from all levels of leadership, improving turf field availability, and allowing teams to have more input and support with game scheduling and team fees.
For CFCA to step to the next level, we need better alignment and involvement between CFC and CFCA. This is something we are committed to making happen! We’ve already begun to invest resources with CFCA in ways we never have before.
Over the last few months, members of CFC’s board have been working to understand the youth soccer landscape to find opportunities for leadership. Here are several key areas we see needs:
Neither CFC nor CFCA will ever be perfect, but we will always strive for excellence. We won’t be afraid to innovate. We will ask for your feedback and listen to you. CFCA’s name and colors are known throughout the region. That legacy will grow in 2019-20 as we renew our focus on a healthy culture for players, coaches, and families at all levels of the club.
In the upcoming weeks and months, you’ll see some of these items begin to take shape. We will keep you informed as best as possible!
Thank you for being part of CFCA in the past and for joining us now. We look forward to a shared future with you. Spread the word…
Something beautiful is happening with CFC Academy!
With great expectation,
On behalf of the board of Chattanooga Football Club
Permalink - Posted on 2019-02-21 20:00, modified at 21:30
The 2019 NPSL regular season it out! Earlier today the NPSL released its Southeastern Conference schedule for 2019, and Chattanooga FC will open the regular season Saturday, May 11th on the road against Inter Nashville FC in Antioch. The boys in blue will then come home to Finley Stadium Saturday, May 18th, against Greenville FC. The regular season schedule runs through July 6th, with the conference and regional playoffs starting mid July.
The NPSL Founders Cup will begin August 10th with a home match against the NY Cosmos FC. More schedule information for the Founder's Cup coming soon!
Permalink - Posted on 2019-02-20 17:52, modified on 2019-02-27 19:33
Chattanooga Football Club today announced its third non-conference match of the season as it welcomes Bugeaters FC of Nebraska to Finley Stadium on Saturday, May 4th, 2019.
Bugeaters are entering their second season of play and have joined the Gulf Coast Premier League for 2019. This will be the team’s first trip to Chattanooga, but their leadership has connections to the Scenic City.
“We are really excited to have Bugeaters here this year. We struck up a friendship with Jonathan at the Soccer Summit last year, and are excited to see how they are building their club.” said Tim Kelly, Chairman of the Board, Chattanooga FC. “If you want to talk about an independent club committed to growing the game through the community, the right way, then you have to look at Bugeaters as a leading example.”
“One of the goals that I had was to someday play Chattanooga FC” said Jonathan Collura, owner, Bugeaters FC. “The club has an amazing supporter base and community. While we are just up-and-coming we are pleased that Sheldon and his staff have given us this opportunity.”
Bugeaters FC focuses on growing and developing local and collegiate talent, including 2017 Chattanooga FC alum Danny Whitehall, who attended Hastings College in Nebraska and played for Bugeaters FC in 2018. Additionally, the Bugeaters merchandise has garnered national attention and is often seen on soccer celebrities around the US. They will be bringing it for sale at the match.
“This season’s team will again focus on local Nebraska based talent and university programs. The lads are excited to be playing at Finley Stadium with thousands of passionate fans,” said Mark Heath-Preston, head coach of Bugeaters FC. “We are confident that we can give CFC a competitive match in May. I am looking forward to meeting Coach Elliott and discussing the program that he has built. We are building a model like this in Nebraska and I am hopeful to spend some time with him.”
Permalink - Posted on 2019-02-14 13:00, modified at 13:01
Dearest supporters and owners,
On this Valentine’s Day, we want you to know that you are loved. And you are appreciated. We are honored and humbled to be a small part of your lives.
Four weeks ago, we put ourselves out on the line. We put all our chips on the table and hoped that supporters near and far would put their chips in with ours...in the name of something authentic, something real. Something that brings our community together in a way that nothing else has. We hoped that people would see our vision for a collective future for Chattanooga Football Club and become a part of it.
And wow! You answered the call! In just four weeks, we are almost 60% to goal thanks to nearly 2000 new co-owners. 2000! Across every populated continent on the planet. Nearly every state in the US. You told us, and the soccer world, that you wanted to be a part of a soccer club committed to its community. A club determined to build a local soccer ecosystem that gives every person, no matter the income level or neighborhood, the chance to play this beautiful game and play it the right way. A club committed to producing the best level of play that we can, but only in a sustainable way that is authentic to our beloved town.
Make no mistake, while there is worldwide interest in what we are doing, most of our owners come from right here in the Scenic City. You are the ones who come out in the thunderstorms. The blistering, Southern heat. You are the ones who stay with us to the end, no matter what (even brutal penalty kicks). And for that, we thank you!
Thank you for committing to being with us for the next 90 years of Chattanooga Football Club. We will rest peacefully tonight knowing that we are loved by you.
Not an owner yet, but think you might want to be? Click here to learn more about becoming an owner of Chattanooga Football Club.
With great love and appreciation,
Chattanooga Football Club
Permalink - Posted on 2019-02-11 18:00, modified on 2019-02-27 22:40
(New York, February 11th, 2019) - The National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) today announced that the established group of 11 clubs competing in the first-ever NPSL Founders Cup competition will begin their home and away regional contests in two sessions: the East Region starting August 10th, and the West Region starting the weekend of August 24th.
The East Region clubs will include Chattanooga FC, Detroit City FC, Miami FC, Miami United FC, Milwaukee Torrent, and New York Cosmos.
The opening matches in the East Region scheduled for August 10th are New York Cosmos at Chattanooga FC, Miami United FC at Milwaukee Torrent, and Detroit City FC at Miami FC.
The West Region will include ASC San Diego, Cal FC, California United Strikers FC, FC Arizona, and Oakland Roots. The opening matches for the West Region will be announced at a later date.
“We are very excited to continue to move along with format and additional details for the first Founders Cup, especially as our regular season NPSL matches are about to begin in the next few months,” Milwaukee Torrent Owner and CEO Andreas Davi commented. “The response from business partners, supporters, and other interested parties in our additional matches this year and a league format in 2020 continues to be very strong, and we are ready to keep things moving forward in a very positive direction for American soccer with this concept.”
The Founders Cup semifinals will be held at the home of the highest remaining seeds on November 2nd, with the final to be held at a TBD location on November 16th.
Full team schedules will be released later in the coming weeks at joint events throughout the country with format, player roster information, and additional details for the Founders Cup coming at a later date.
Media Relations Contacts:
The Chattanooga FC 2019 Founders Cup matches at Finley Stadium are powered by EPB Fiber Optics.
Permalink - Posted on 2019-02-08 16:00, modified on 2019-02-11 17:59
Chattanooga Football Club is pleased to announce its first international exhibition of the 2019 season: Guatemalan powerhouse Comunicaciones Futbol Club Sociedad Anonima, more commonly known as Comunicaciones FC. Comunicaciones FC will visit Finley Stadium Saturday, March 23rd, at 6:00 PM. The match is included with Chattanooga FC’s season passes and individual tickets will be available for individual purchase on March 1st.
“We have always wanted to host a team from Guatemala at Finley,” said Sheldon Grizzle, president of Chattanooga FC. “Comunicaciones has won dozens of championships in Guatemala and so it will be a real test for our guys right out of the gates. We are honored to be their hosts in Chattanooga.”
In the team’s 70 year history, Comunicaciones FC, or “Los Cremas” as they’re known for their customary white kits, have won 30 league titles, 8 Copas de Guatemala, 10 Campion de Campiones (Supercups) and three CONCACAF cups. Many of the players in Comunicaciones FC’s lineup are Guatemalan National team players, who will be competing for spots in the 2020 World Cup squad.
“Chattanooga’s international community is growing and, in particular, we have a rapidly growing Guatemalan population,” said Gladys Pineda, director of international community outreach for Chattanooga FC. “As we continue to strengthen our relationships with the international community, we want to demonstrate our commitment to bringing top quality soccer to the Scenic City and bringing groups together.”
“Estamos emocionados por llegar a jugar con el Chattanooga FC. Oportunidades como esta, para estrechar las relaciones con otros equipos, no se dan todos los días. Queremos brindar un buen espectáculo. Volver al ámbito internacional para nosotros es muy importante.” – William Fernando Coito (Head Coach)
Jugadores, cuerpo técnico y directiva de Comunicaciones FC manifestamos nuestro entusiasmo ante la firma del contrato para la realización de un partido amistoso ante el equipo Chattanooga Footbal Club a realizarse el 23 de marzo a las 18:00 HRS en el Finley Stadium, en la Ciudad de Chattanooga Tenessee.
Comunicaciones Futbol Club es el equipo mas ganador y más importante de Guatemala, y uno de los más atractivos de Centroamérica. En este año, en el que celebramos nuestro 70 aniversario, es un orgullo poder compartir con Chattanooga Football Club y su gran afición esta experiencia. Estamos seguros que, además de un buen partido, podremos compartir experiencias y alternativas que nos permitan plantear las bases de un acuerdo de colaboración entre ambas instituciones.
Permalink - Posted on 2019-02-05 16:22, modified at 18:13
February 5, 2019, Chattanooga, TN - Chattanooga Football Club announced today that Gladys Pineda has been hired as the soccer club’s Director of International Community Outreach. Pineda will be responsible for helping connect the club to the growing international community in Tennessee and North Georgia.
“Gladys has been a key advocate for the international community in our region over the last decade,” said club president Sheldon Grizzle. “Those who know her have seen her passion for building relationships across diverse communities and we are honored to have her as part of our team to continue and expand that work.”
A Colombian native who came to Tennessee nearly two decades ago, Pineda has worked to make Chattanooga a more international city and aid immigrants who have come to the region in recent years. While serving as a volunteer member of the boards of numerous local civic, equity and education groups, she has also organized the Latin Festival and CultureFest – two major events that help build bridges between the Latino community and the broader community. As part of the Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce's International Business Council, she hosted several cross cultural trainings developing the monthly workshops series "Global Mindset" for international businesses. Additionally she assisted other international events for local groups including the French American Chamber of Commerce, Filipino American Association of Chattanooga, Indian Association of Greater Chattanooga, and Venezuelan groups among many others.
“I am excited about this opportunity to work with Chattanooga FC,” said Pineda. "I love soccer and working with the international community, making this the perfect opportunity to utilize my background to further the goal of the club to better connect with the international community, and my personal mission to promote unity through sports, art and cultural diversity."
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-29 21:50
In 2009, many questioned our decision to start a soccer club in the heart of SEC football country. But what seemed like a pipe dream 10 years ago has inspired communities and clubs around the U.S. to follow in our footsteps.
Our original business plan hoped for an average of 500 fans per game. When more than 1,500 showed up to our first game (and endured a thunderstorm to watch us lose), we knew our dreams could actually become a reality. Just a few years later, over 18,000 fans came out to watch us play in the national championship.
We’re honored and humbled to be in this position. Chattanooga Football Club was founded by a group of local people who care for the welfare of the city and are actively pursuing it through philanthropic efforts, growing small business opportunities, building our entrepreneurial ecosystem, and more. As a founding group, we asked ourselves from day one, “How can we use soccer as a tool to improve Chattanooga and our quality of life?”
Over the last 10 seasons, we’ve invested in our community through time, energy, and resources. Chattanooga FC Women, Chattanooga FC Academy, Chattanooga FC Foundation, Highland Park Commons, Chattanooga Sports Ministries, and Operation Get Active are ways we’ve engaged, invested in, and enriched our community since 2009.
There's even more that we want to accomplish, but we'll need to do it our way, and we'll need your help. The American soccer landscape is currently dominated by a small group of wealthy owners – a model that runs counter to our community-based philosophy. Our model for long-term growth is inspired by the Green Bay Packers’ community ownership structure and we have long dreamed of giving our fans ownership in Chattanooga Football Club.
The time has arrived. We are now taking advantage of recent changes in securities law to offer shares in our club.
This is not just another investment opportunity, it's about love of the game and love of our community. While our focus is always local, we hope our offering inspires a wave of supporter ownership across the U.S, changing the landscape of American soccer by connecting teams with fans and the communities that love them.
We’ve said this from the beginning: Chattanooga Football Club is Chattanooga’s football club.
We’ve tied our fate to a long-term commitment to this community. We are Chattanooga’s team. Invest in Chattanooga Football Club and help us shape the next 90 years to fulfill our dreams together.
Questions about ownership? email us at email@example.com
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-29 17:00, modified on 2019-02-02 16:39
EMAIL US TO RECEIVE A COPY OF OUR 2019 SPONSOR PACKAGES: firstname.lastname@example.org
Greetings from Chattanooga Football Club!
As a co-founder and the new President of the club, I’m excited to help lead Chattanooga Football Club into a new chapter. As you know, we were built for Chattanoogans by Chattanoogans. We have been woven into the fabric of this community through our men’s and women’s teams, our Academy and Foundation programs for over 1600 youth, our new Chattanooga Football League for adults, and our stewardship of Highland Park Commons—where we’ve identified over 40 different nationalities playing soccer on a regular basis.
Some momentous changes for 2019 include moving from amateur players playing a three month season to professional players playing an eight month season. We will be playing teams from major markets like New York City, Miami, and Detroit among others. We have added some notable local investors to our ownership group and will be announcing additional exciting things about the club that will set us apart from any other team in America. Chattanooga Football Club has been and will continue to be the gold standard for community-based soccer clubs around the country!
In 2018, we we surpassed 338,000th fan in our first decade, claimed the NPSL Southeast regular season conference title for the seventh time, and showcased over a dozen different nationalities on our roster. Our digital engagement continues to grow and our following now exceeds 40,000 across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and YouTube.
In addition to the deep roots we have in the community, you are likely aware of the passionate supporters group that has continued to grow. We are the envy of the country when it comes to how Chattanoogans have supported us. We believe that this passionate support translates to positive goodwill for our corporate partners and sponsors.
As we head into our eleventh straight season at Finley Stadium, the new video board will be a game-changer for our sponsors and our fans. Wait until you see it in action! We also have new sponsorship inventory for 2019 that is fresh and creative. We’re digital natives and looking to leverage our influence through our digital properties for brands that align with our focus on community and engagement.
Over the last ten years, we have been building a solid foundation so that our great, great, great, grandkids will enjoy the same Chattanooga Football Club we enjoy now. We are committed to Chattanooga and we are never leaving. We invite you to join us in our pursuit of building something that Chattanoogans will be proud of for many years to come. So here’s to the past ten years, and to next ninety!
It’s my pleasure to share our 2019 Sponsorship Document with you.
Thank you for being part of our story!
SHELDON GRIZZLE, CO-FOUNDER / PRESIDENT
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-28 15:00
Two of America's most well-known independent soccer clubs, Chattanooga FC and Detroit City FC, today announced a non-conference matchup in Chattanooga’s Finley Stadium on April 6th, 2019. Recently, both teams announced their intent to participate in the inaugural NPSL Founders Cup, where they will meet each other again later in the year.
Chattanooga FC and Detroit City FC are both home to large and vocal supporters groups, known as the Chattahooligans and the Northern Guard, respectively. The atmosphere in and around Finley Stadium is sure to be entertaining. During halftime of this year’s match, Operation Get Active will host their annual Corporate Cup championship on the pitch to help raise awareness and funds for their work in the local schools and recreation centers. Last season, Chattanooga FC and Detroit City FC played a home and away series, which resulted in a tie in Chattanooga and a victory for Detroit at home. "This is a match up that we will always relish, but we are especially looking forward to a victory in this game to pull the series even," said Sheldon Grizzle, president of Chattanooga Football Club. "These two teams demonstrate to communities across the country that grassroots soccer teams and passionate, loyal fans are here to stay."
Tickets are included as part of all season pass packages for Chattanooga Football Club fans. Individual tickets will go on sale for $10 in advance on March 1st at chattanoogafc.com and $12 the day of the match at Finley Stadium. "We will always look forward to playing Chattanooga," said Detroit City FC co-owner Sean Mann. "It’s a match-up of two organizations that have redefined what an American soccer club can be, and it will also be a chance for some of the best soccer fans in the country to come together in the stands.”
Both clubs deserve credit for growing the beautiful game at a grass roots level. Matches like these will be sure to draw eyes from all over the country and all levels of the sport. "We expect these matches will generate considerable buzz, as both clubs are telling exciting stories in the soccer landscape" said NPSL Chairman Kenny Farrell. "We are proud to showcase this event to all the supporters of the NPSL and bring further awareness to teams in our league."
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-25 20:29, modified at 20:32
Chattanooga FC is thrilled to welcome Felipe “PIPE” Oliveira back into the fold for 2019. The explosive forward/midfielder led the team last year in goals, finding the back of the net seven times in all competitions. The Belo Horizonte, Brazil native will be back for his third season with the club, after playing for coach Bill Elliott at the University of West Florida where he earned all GSC selections four times.
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-23 01:54, modified on 2019-01-27 23:25
Chattanooga Football Club is thrilled to welcome goalkeeper Phil D’Amico back to Fort Finley for our historic 2019 campaign. Phil excelled between the posts for Chattanooga FC last year in his first season with the club with five shutouts in 12 games, maintaining an average of 1.00 goals per game. He also was named to the NPSL Southeast All Conference team.
“Playing for CFC last summer was one of the best experiences in my soccer career. With thousands of fans chanting your name, there is really nothing like it,” said D’Amico. “Last year was my first year with the club but it felt like I had been there for years. The coaching staff and players welcomed me in and the culture around the team was amazing.”
“The fans are truly the best! They traveled to all of the away games no matter how far it was. And now that the club is transitioning to professional players this year, I knew I wanted to continue playing here. I cannot wait to get started and continue making history with Chattanooga FC.”
“Phil is a great player for us because he understands what we are all about,” said head coach Bill Elliott. He had a solid season last year and his stats speak for themselves. We are thrilled to have him back for another year.”
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-15 19:52, modified on 2019-01-16 13:20
Friends, Fans, and Supporters of Chattanooga Football Club,
Greetings as we begin a historic 2019! During the holidays, we had some time to reflect on where we’ve been and where we're heading.
Chattanooga Football Club celebrated 10 years of locally-owned soccer.
Bill Elliott has been our coach for 7 years and will lead our team in 2019 as coach and general manager.
We won our seventh NPSL Southeast Conference title.
Thousands of kids are being positively impacted by Chattanooga FC Academy, Chattanooga FC Foundation, Operation Get Active, Chattanooga Sports Ministries, and Highland Park Commons.
Our relationship with Finley Stadium is solid with our first multi-year agreement.
Chattanooga Football Club, seeking a viable, long-term sustainable path to professional soccer, is transitioning from amateur to pro this season.
Last year was our 10th season as a locally-owned soccer club in the heart of SEC football country that was started by a group of Chattanooga-based entrepreneurs. People who thought we were wasting our time did not understand our use of the word “football.” We started on a shoestring budget with a crazy idea that soccer could be a tool to bring together diverse cultures in our city. From day one, we believed in an authentically homegrown club for Chattanooga by Chattanoogans.
We kicked off our 10th season with a shocking result against FC Dallas of MLS - a 1-1 draw. The people who braved that frigid February day will forever remember Zeca’s back post header to bring the match even.
In March, we brought dozens of amateur, semi-pro, and professional team ownership groups to Chattanooga for the Summit for American Soccer to discuss a long-term viable way to bring professional soccer to communities around the US. Conversations continued throughout 2018 and are leading to exciting new experiences in 2019, 2020, and beyond.
Bill Elliott returned in 2018 for his seventh season as our head coach, leading our team to its seventh NPSL Southeast Conference championship. Bill is a proven winner at every level he has coached. Our women’s team, led by first-year coach Erin Ridley, won more games during the season than the previous four seasons combined on their way to their first-ever conference title.
Chattanooga Football Club continues to positively impact thousands of kids through Chattanooga FC Academy, Chattanooga FC Foundation, Operation Get Active, Chattanooga Sports Ministries, and Highland Park Commons. Lastly, the all-new Chattanooga Football League launched in September with 420 adults playing soccer in the most diverse, highest quality soccer league in the region. We had over 25 nationalities represented in the league with over 75% of participants being minorities.
As details were starting to come together in late July about our club joining the professional ranks, a rival league of the NPSL announced that they were placing a team in Chattanooga. In addition to this, there were questions about the club’s financial stability and the potential of significant changes in our relationship with Finley Stadium. There were a lot of questions in the community about the future of soccer in our region, in particular with Chattanooga Football Club. Here are a few details...
Our relationship with Finley Stadium is solid, and we've secured our first multi-year deal in our history with the stadium. We will be calling Fort Finley home for years to come. In August, CFC Co-Founder Sheldon Grizzle was asked by our board to step in as interim general manager to help get our financial house back in order. Since then our board, along with new local investors, have infused new capital and set the stage for our move into the world of professional soccer. And we’re now glad to say Sheldon will continue in the capacity of our President.
Over the last few years, we have looked seriously at various options to take our club to the next level. We talked with owners of clubs in various leagues. We decided that we needed to make our own way, stay local, and continue to grow in a long term sustainable way. We absolutely believe that our patient approach will yield the best outcomes for decades to come.
Our original business plan in 2009 assumed an average of 250-500 people per game. When over 1,500 showed up and withstood a thunderstorm for our first game, we knew we had tapped into something special. Together with you, we’ve accomplished a lot over the past 10 seasons: almost 400,000 fans through Finley’s gates, seven conference championships, three regional championships, one national championship, and a supporter base that is the envy across the country.
Our commitment now, as it has been over the past 10 years, is to put a great team on the field, create an incredible fan experience, represent our city well on the national and international stages, and make positive impacts in our community. Our owners live here, we educate our children here and we invest in the place we call home. Those drivers make us city-centric and long-term viable.
Chattanooga Football Club is positioned for even greater growth. We will continue to be the gold standard growing the game in a smaller market. Here are a few ways we are enhancing the local soccer experience:
We are now a public benefit corporation. This is an important evolution for us because now our legal structure is aligned with our mission-focused model.
Our local ownership group has expanded. For the first time since the creation of the club in 2009, we have added to our ownership group. We now have over 20 Chattanoogans in our ownership group who care deeply about our community and want to see Chattanooga Football Club thrive.
We will be joining the professional world of soccer. Our diligent and steady work is paying off as we transition up to the next level of soccer. We are taking this next step with iconic independent clubs like New York Cosmos, Detroit City FC, and Miami FC.
Our coaches are first-class. We are proud to have two of the winningest coaches in the country on the sideline this year! Bill Elliott and Peter Fuller have nearly 600 wins and two national championships combined throughout their coaching tenures.
CFC Women returning in 2020. With our transition to pro soccer and the loss of Coach Ridley as our women’s team coach to San Jose Earthquakes, we have committed to bring the women’s team back in 2020.
We are back at Finley Stadium. "Fort Finley,” our home for 10 seasons, will continue as our local home for years to come.
International matches are in the works. In our early years, we had a strong commitment to international friendlies. We are excited to return to our roots of bringing diverse communities together to celebrate soccer in our city.
We remain committed to the CFC Academy. In 2012, we started CFCA to help bring together a fractured club soccer system. We are more committed than ever to continue building a strong and unified club for the city.
Thank you for your love and support over the years. You have made locally-based soccer a reality. Chattanooga Football Club was built by people of Chattanooga, for the people of Chattanooga and we will continue to grow with our city!
Sheldon Grizzle, President / Co-founder
Chattanooga Football Club
Tim Kelly, Chairman / Co-founder
Chattanooga Football Club
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-15 14:06, modified on 2019-01-18 18:54
With the arrival of the Chattanooga Red Wolves Soccer Club, two professional soccer clubs are faced with the question of whether both can survive in the Scenic City.
For the homegrown Chattanooga Football Club, which has had an average attendance of 3,600 fans in 94 home games since debuting in 2009, officials' belief is the market is not big enough for both to survive.
"Both clubs agree this is an extraordinary city," CFC chairman Tim Kelly said. "While it is possible rivalries can create an expanding market, when you divide numbers it is not a big enough market for us both by any normal calculation. The Red Wolves' intent is to put us out of business, but we have said from the start we are never going to leave Chattanooga."
Permalink - Posted on 2019-01-10 15:00, modified on 2019-01-24 19:41
UPDATE JAN 24, 2019: TRYOUTS ARE SOLD OUT
Thank you so much for your overwhelming interest, but both tryout sessions are totally full. If you have high level playing experience and simply cannot make the playoffs, please send us a note and we will connect you with our coaching staff
Chattanooga, TN (January 10th, 2019)- The seeds for the 2019 season will be planted February 9th, 2019 in Finley Stadium as Chattanooga Football Club holds open tryouts. Aspiring local soccer players will have their chance to shine in front of the club’s coaching staff.
“In years past, we’ve identified some incredible impact players through these tryouts,” said head coach and GM, Bill Elliott. “We are eager to see who see comes out for the chance to be signed as a professional player.”
Some of the club’s most popular players were discovered through previous open tryouts such as David Perez, a fan favorite forward from Dalton.
Tryouts will be held at Finley Stadium, the home of Chattanooga FC, on February 9th from 9:00-11:00 am. An additional afternoon session may be scheduled based on the number of registrants. Registration is $50 and players will receive a 2019 tryout T-shirt. Space is extremely limited and availability will be handled on a first come, first served basis.
“Open tryouts are an important part of our culture at Chattanooga FC as the community’s local club,” said Sheldon Grizzle, president of the club. “There is tremendous talent in our region and we hope they put their abilities on display for our staff.
“As we transition to professional contracts for our players in 2019, this is a great opportunity to help make local players’ dreams come true”.
WE APOLOGIZE BUT TRYOUTS ARE COMPLETELY FULL AND
WE ARE NO LONGER ACCEPTING NEW REGISTRANTS.
Permalink - Posted on 2018-12-21 19:00, modified at 19:04
Chattanooga Football Club today announced the return of Bill Elliott as head coach for the 2019 season. Elliott rejoins the club for his eighth season with the club where he has amassed a record of 79-25-24 (.711), including three 15-win seasons, six Southeastern Conference titles, four national semi finals, three national final appearances, and one amateur national championship title.
“Bill has been a force for Chattanooga Football Club over the last seven years,” said Sheldon Grizzle, President of Chattanooga Football Club. “We’re thrilled that he’s back! He has always put together highly competitive teams and we have no doubt that he’ll do the same as we transition from amateur to professional players next year.”
In addition to his return as the head coach, Elliott has also taken on the role of general manager for the club. As Elliott steps into this new role, Sheldon Grizzle, the club’s current general manager, will be named President of Chattanooga Football Club.
“This is an exciting time to be a Chattanooga Football Club fan,” said Elliott. “There is so much positive momentum here, I’m confident that 2019 will be our best year yet. We already have some players identified that we’d like to bring onboard. As always, the Chattahooligans will be here to give us the perfect atmosphere. We’re moving forward, and I’m excited to be back with the team.”
The club also announced today that Peter Fuller will join Elliott as the club’s associate head coach. Fuller is one of the winningest coaches of all time in NAIA soccer history with a record of 311-115-21. He won two NAIA national championships as a head coach and has also spent time as an assistant with the New England Revolution and the Philadelphia Union of Major League Soccer.
“I am so excited about the opportunity to join Chattanooga FC.” Said Fuller, “To have an opportunity to be a part of a club with the great history that this club has and be on the ground floor as they enter a new era is both an honor and a privilege. I am excited to have the opportunity to work with my old colleague and friend Bill Elliott in this venture!”
“We are blessed with a coaching staff of this caliber,” continued Grizzle. “Most clubs around the country would love to have one of these men heading up their team. Both men have had incredible success identifying and cultivating talent. We are certain that our players will thrive under their leadership and, together, they will lead Chattanooga Football Club to a new level.”
Bill Elliott Facts at a Glance:
Chattanooga FC Head Coach 2012-present
Record at Chattanooga FC- 79-25-24 Three-time NPSL National Coach of the Year
11-Time Conference Coach of the Year
Three 15-win seasons
Six Southeast Conference Titles in seven years
Four-time National Semi-Finalist
Three-time National Finalist
Peter Fuller Facts at a Glance:
New England Revolution- reserve team coach and first team assistant coach
Philadelphia Union- staff coach
All-time NAIA Record- 311-115-21
Two time NAIA National Champion Coach
Three time NAIA National Coach of the Year
Ten time Conference Coach of the Year
NAIA Hall of Fame
Permalink - Posted on 2018-12-17 20:01
NPSL Founders Cup Members Announce Two Region Split For Inaugural 2019 Event
(New York, December 17, 2018)
The National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) today announced that the established group of 11 clubs stretching across the United States for the first-ever NPSL Founders Cup competition will be split into two regions to better build rivalries and maximize interest in the event, which will run from August to November 2019. That competition will lead to a full league schedule in the spring to fall of 2020. The clubs will play home and away matches in their regions for the inaugural Founder’s Cup.
The East Region will include: Chattanooga FC, Detroit City FC, Miami FC, Miami United FC, Milwaukee Torrent, and New York Cosmos.
The West Region will include: ASC San Diego, Cal FC, California United Strikers FC, FC Arizona, and Oakland Roots.
The format, player roster information, schedule, and additional details of the Founders Cup will be announced at a date later this winter.
Media Relations Contacts:
Permalink - Posted on 2018-12-07 14:00, modified at 16:59
After all this time, he's still the Juan. Chattanooga Football Club is proud to announce that Chattanooga FC midfielder Juan Hernandez Mendizabal has agreed to sign with the club for the 2019 season.
Juan “Juanito” Hernandez joined Chattanooga FC late in 2015 season and made an immediate impact as a midfielder during the 2015 playoffs. His play-making and passing ability helped lead Chattanooga FC that year to their fourth national final. In that championship match, which set the league attendance record of 18,227 fans, Juanito was a standout player, setting him up to earn the position of starting central midfielder for the club the following three years. Additionally, Juanito has won three NPSL Southeast Conference Championships (2015-16, 2018), two NPSL South Region Championships (2015-16), and a US Amateur National Championship (2015). He earned all NPSL honorable mention in 2016 and All Conference XI in 2018.
“Juanito embodies the hard work ethic, leadership, selflessness, and pure ability that we value at Chattanooga FC.” said Sheldon Grizzle, General Manager for Chattanooga FC. “We couldn’t be happier that Juan will be bossing the midfield for us in the historic 2019 season.”
The 28-year-old Hernandez hails from Madrid, Spain, but now calls Chattanooga his home. Juanito graduated from Bethel University in 2014, and coached soccer at the University of West Florida for three years alongside Chattanooga FC head coach Bill Elliott.
Permalink - Posted on 2018-12-04 20:00
Chattanooga Football Club and The Stadium Corporation today agreed upon a three year deal that will keep the NPSL powerhouse in Chattanooga’s largest sports venue for years to come. During the club’s ten season history, over 338,000 people have come to Finley Stadium to watch Chattanooga FC play.
“Our supporters have made Chattanooga FC the envy of premier soccer clubs around the country, setting and breaking attendance records in Finley Stadium,” said Tim Kelly, Chairman of Chattanooga FC. “Records are made to be broken and there is no doubt that the best is yet to come.”
There have been great moments over the local club’s historic run in Finley Stadium. One of the most memorable for many Chattanoogans occurred on August 8, 2015, when 18,227 packed the stadium to watch the NPSL Final between Chattanooga FC and NY Cosmos. In 2017, MLS’ Atlanta United played its first ever match on a blustery day in Finley Stadium against Chattanooga FC, playing in front of 12,484 fans. Finley has also been the home of Chattanooga FC Women’s team for the last five seasons and hosted two US National Team games in the last three years.
“Finley has been the only home we’ve ever known,” said Sheldon Grizzle, General Manager for Chattanooga FC. “The biggest moments in our club’s history have happened here.”
“The Stadium Corporation, its board, management, and operations teams are delighted that the tradition of Chattanooga FC at ‘Fort Finley’ will continue,” said Gordon Davenport, Chairman of The Stadium Corporation. “For ten years, the club has been a strong part Finley’s calendar, and we’re all excited to see it continue to grow. I’m a Chattahooligan at heart and can’t wait for the 2019 season.”
Chattanooga FC is planning multiple non-conference games in March and April before the NPSL season gets under way in May. In August, the club will enter the Inaugural Founders Cup with teams such as the New York Cosmos and Detroit City Football Club. The clubs will then square off in a nationwide league in 2020 with a full rosters of professional players.
Grizzle added, “We can’t wait to make new memories in Finley, particularly in 2019 with this transitional season as we go to the next level with the Founders Cup in August. Finley is an iconic part of Chattanooga’s Southside and we remain honored to play a role in the growth of our city.”
Fast Facts about Chattanooga FC and Finley Stadium:
• First Game: May 16, 2009 vs Atlanta FC; attendance 1,577.
• Total Chattanooga FC games played in Finley Stadium: 94
• Home record: 64 (W) - 19 (L) - 11 (T)
• Highest Attendance: 18,227 (NPSL Record)
• Chattanooga FC is only NPSL team to have single-game home attendance over 10,000 (4 times)
• Total Chattanooga FC Attendance: 338,334
• Total attendance of all soccer matches in Finley Stadium since 2009: more than 400,000
ABOUT CHATTANOOGA FOOTBALL CLUB
Worldwide, soccer builds community, shapes culture, develops talent and unites diverse peoples. Chattanooga Football Club for ten years has helped the same to happen in Chattanooga, creating true opportunity for all players and a great experience for all fans. Chattanooga Football Club is a member team of the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL), South Region. The NPSL is sanctioned by the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) as an affiliate of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF), and FIFA, the world’s governing body for soccer. In August, the club will enter the Inaugural Founders Cup ahead of a full season in 2020.
Permalink - Posted on 2018-11-23 16:21, modified at 16:34
Q. Why did prices go up?
A. We will be guaranteeing more home matches this season (and that number could grow even more if we host playoff matches). On a per game basis, the season passes are actually less expensive than last season.
Q. What happened to Gold and Sky?
A. Our goal is to keep things as simple as possible. In that vein, we are offering two types of season pass for 2019.
Q. Will you have season parking passes?
A. We are still working through how parking will be managed this year. More details to come as they are available.
Q. How old must you be before needing to buy a ticket?
A. All children 6 and under are admitted for free. All others must have a ticket or season pass.
Q. What if I bought an individual ticket to the season opener and I am now buying season pass?
A. We will give you an additional "buddy ticket" to give to a friend, family member, or total stranger.
Q. When will my wristband be shipped?
A. In previous years we shipped wristbands immediately, but this season we are upgrading to a much more sophisticated ticketing system and will have to wait until the new system is implemented to issue wristbands. This season, wristbands will be picked up at the 2019 Jersey Reveal Party.
Q. When will the Jersey Reveal Party be announced?
A. The Jersey Reveal Party will be held in the early spring. Typically we announce the date and location in mid-February.
Q. I bought a season pass jersey and it doesn’t fit.
A. All new and unworn season pass jerseys can be exchanged for a different size at the stadium or at Winder Binder (40 Frazier Avenue, on the Northshore, 423-413-8999).
Q. Where can I get season passes before the season starts?
A. Besides buying online, passes are available at Winder Binder.
Permalink - Posted on 2018-11-15 18:20, modified at 18:25
Eleven Founding Members to Launch a New League in Association with the National Premier Soccer League
Clubs to Compete for Inaugural Founders Cup from August through November 2019; Full Schedule Planned For 2020
(New York, November 15, 2018) - The National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) today announced that an established group of 11 clubs stretching across the United States have launched a new league in association with the NPSL. The clubs will compete in the first-ever NPSL Founders Cup competition that will run from August to November 2019. That competition will lead to a full league schedule in the spring to fall of 2020. These clubs will be making a full-time commitment to their markets and will include professional players, coaches, and staff.
“We are very excited to bring a new brand of community-based soccer to the U.S. market,” said NPSL Chairman Joe Barone.“Beginning with the Founders Cup, fans will be able to enjoy watching authentic clubs compete with professional players and staff. This new venture will build upon the success and experience of NPSL and its nationwide network of local soccer club members.”
"We support our members’ growth and expansion of their leagues,” said United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) President John Motta. “This is another opportunity to develop players, coaches, administrators, and referees at the highest level of adult soccer. This is absolutely critical for player development, as it prepares players onto the next level and also for referee development, as this level of adult soccer is the best training ground for referees in this country."
The 11 founding members include ASC San Diego, Cal FC, California United Strikers FC, Chattanooga FC, Detroit City FC, FC Arizona, Miami FC, Miami United FC, Milwaukee Torrent, New York Cosmos, and Oakland Roots, and plans are being developed to add additional clubs.
The format, player roster information, schedule, and additional details of the Founders Cup will be announced at a date later this winter.
“Having been Chattanooga's football club for ten years, we are really excited about the future and moving up to the next level,” said Sheldon Grizzle, General Manager for Chattanooga Football Club. “This has been in the works for several years and we are proud for our fans and supporters to see this come to fruition.”
Permalink - Posted on 2018-11-14 12:18, modified at 12:28
The success of Chattanooga Football Club over the years can be attributed to a cast of great players, most recently the pairing of Juan Hernandez and Felipe Oliveira.
Hernandez and Oliveira are likely to be the next CFC players to turn pro, joining the likes of Mark Sherrod, Niall McCabe, Sean McFarlane, and Thomas Hunter, all players who have made the jump to the next level.
Hernandez has played for Chattanooga FC since 2015, where he has helped CFC win conference and regional titles and garnered 2016 All-NPSL Honorable Mention recognition. His intense work ethic and tricky footwork have made him a notable player and a fan favorite.
“The Chattahooligans and the city of Chattanooga make a great difference, they make it special,” Hernandez said. “It is hard to explain if you don’t live it. CFC it is a really community-oriented team and the city of Chattanooga loves it and responds to it. In 2015 we drew 18,227 people to an amateur soccer game. That speaks by itself. But the numbers for attendance are not really the special part. The city of Chattanooga and the Chattahooligans love CFC players and players love the Chattahooligans. Every season players and fans do activities together, fans reach out to players to meet their families and invite them to eat, to share life experiences. These things make it personal and that leads to better performances and experiences on and off the field.”
Read the full article at NPSL.com
Permalink - Posted on 2018-11-09 00:59, modified at 02:01
Local investors support continued growth, expansion of local soccer
Chattanooga, TN (November 8, 2018)- Lamp Post, a local investment group, has agreed to acquire an ownership position in Chattanooga Football Club.
Chattanooga Football Club has played in the NPSL, a nationwide semi-pro league, for the past 10 seasons. After unparalleled success in the NPSL, Chattanooga Football Club’s local ownership group is reviewing a move into a higher league.
“Bringing in Lamp Post is the next step in building a solid foundation for Chattanooga Football Club as we set our sights on the club moving to the next level,” said Tim Kelly, Chairman of Chattanooga Football Club. “Lamp Post and its partners have done so much for Chattanooga and we are pleased they are joining our team at this crucial time.”
Barry Large, a founding partner at Lamp Post Group, will be joining Chattanooga Football Club’s board of directors.
“Lamp Post is all about investing in the future of this great community. Chattanooga Football Club has been a critical part of the ethos of Chattanooga over the past decade,” Large said. “We want to make sure it continues to play this key role, so it’s a no-brainer for us to join the ownership group.”
Large was a cofounder and CFO for Access America as the organization grew to $500 million in revenue over a 12 year period. In 2014, Access America merged with Coyote Logistics, which ultimately sold to UPS in 2015 for upwards of $1.8 billion.
Lamp Post was spearheaded by the founders of Access America: Barry Large, Ted Alling, and Alan Davis. Lamp Post’s investment in Chattanooga Football Club marks the second time the group has purchased a stake in a local sports team. In 2015, Lamp Post joined Hardball Capital, and other local investors, in acquiring the Chattanooga Lookouts.
“We are honored to have Lamp Post joining the team. Lamp Post’s partners epitomize how Chattanoogans invest in Chattanooga-based businesses and other ventures,” said Sheldon Grizzle, Interim President and General Manager for the club. “We’ve known the Lamp Post team for years and we are so excited about the energy they bring to the table. Everything they have been involved with in town is better because of it. They will make a difference.”
Chattanooga Football Club’s ownership group already includes local entrepreneurs, philanthropists, and businessmen including Tim Kelly, Sheldon Grizzle, Krue Brock, Daryl Heald, Paul Rustand, Thomas Clark, and Marshall Brock.