Chattanooga FC is a professional soccer team based in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The club competes in the National Independent Soccer Association (NISA), the third division of American soccer.
Chattanooga FC Youth Development System
Chattanooga FC Academy serves children from U7-U18, kindergarten through 12th grade. It is the region’s most successful youth soccer club giving players a pathway from rec soccer to competitive soccer to college soccer to pro soccer for players with that goal. We have collaborated with rec soccer clubs North River Soccer Association and Middle Valley Soccer Academy, as well as the professional Chattanooga Football Club (CFC). Chattanooga FC Academy is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Chattanooga FC hosted a soccer summit in 2012 with 30 of the city’s top soccer coaches to discuss how best to raise the quality of youth players in Chattanooga. That summit led to a more unified system across the city led by Chattanooga FC. A new youth select club called Chattanooga FC Academy emerged. In 2014, two rec organizations Redoubt and North River merged under Chattanooga FC Academy as a way to promote quality players into the Academy. Also in 2014, East Ridge Futbol Club merged its select soccer program under CFCA followed by Middle Valley in 2016, creating one large club that can put the city’s best players in one organization.
CFC Academy’s vision is to foster a stronger community in Chattanooga by building relationships through the sport of soccer, the world’s game.
CFC Academy develops soccer players of a wide range of ages in the Chattanooga region through a unified system of coaches, teams, training, and facilities. Working alongside the Chattanooga community, we serve all youth, regardless of race, creed, or socioeconomic background- creating progressive and innovative opportunities for them to grow and excel in soccer skills, in the delight of play, in the discipline of teamwork, and in the benefits of dedication to the sport.
CFC Academy Recruitment Trials
Our top players and teams will be able to compete for state championships through TSSA State League as well as opportunities for regional and national competition.
Just like the largest and most successful clubs in our state, we are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a mission to support the community. That means the goal of our soccer club is never about profit and never will be.
CFC Academy teams will be registered through Tennessee State Soccer Association and US Youth Soccer. For more information on tryouts, please click here.
Chattanooga FC Recruitment Trials
At the time of this writing, there is no official academy/trial information for Chattanooga FC. Please come back at a later date while we monitor this club or click here to visit their official news section for more information.
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Chattanooga FC History
Tim Kelly, Krue Brock, Marshall Brock, Paul Rustand, Sean McDaniel, Daryl Heald, Thomas Clark, and Sheldon Grizzle were the original founders of Chattanooga FC in 2009. Their goal was to compete in the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL), which is the fourth tier of the American soccer pyramid and is roughly equivalent to the USL Premier Development League. Chattanooga FC was established in 2009.
The squad finished their first season with a record of 4 wins and 3 defeats, which placed them third in the Southeast Division. Chattanooga FC overcame the challenges they faced in their first season to have a successful run in 2010, which included winning their conference and advancing to the NPSL finals. The season came to an end with a loss to the Sacramento Gold in the NPSL Championship game in 2010, which ended with a score of 3–1.
After a disappointing third-place finish in the 2011 season and missing out on the playoffs, Chattanooga FC came back stronger than ever in 2012, winning the newly created South Southeast Conference West and clinching the NPSL title with a 4–1 victory over the defending NPSL champion Jacksonville United FC in Jacksonville. In 2011, Chattanooga FC finished the season in third place, missing out on the playoffs.
A one-game playoff to determine the South Conference Champion was contested in Conyers, Georgia, against the Georgia Revolution, who emerged victorious in the South Southeast Conference East. The collapse of the structure of the South-South Central Conference necessitated the playoff. Luis Trude scored the game-winning goal for Chattanooga in the 72nd minute, and the result was a 1-0 victory for the home team. Chattanooga will now compete in the NPSL National Finals in San Diego, California.
Chattanooga suffered another defeat in the NPSL Championship game, this time falling to FC Sonic by a score of 0-1 on a header scored by FC Sonic in the 78th minute. Prior to this match, Chattanooga had defeated the Bay Area Ambassadors by a score of 3–2. This was Chattanooga FC’s second consecutive defeat in the NPSL Championship game. The 2013 season for Chattanooga FC kicked off with the expansion of the South Region into four divisions. As a result of this expansion, Chattanooga was placed in the Southeast Division of the South Conference along with five other teams.
Again, Chattanooga emerged victorious at the top of the division, but as a result of their one loss, they were forced to compete away from home in the Regional Playoffs. In order to compete against the unbeaten and top-seeded Tulsa Athletics, who had previously won the South Central Division, Chattanooga made the trip to Tulsa, Oklahoma. The game ended in a tie, 0–0, and the winner was determined by penalty kicks. The goalkeeper for Chattanooga, Greggaa Hartley, produced an unbelievable three saves out of three opportunities, while the team as a whole was successful on all three attempts to progress to the regional final in Richmond, Virginia.
The final score of the Regional Final was 1-0 in favor of RVA Football Club, who went on to win the NPSL championship. Chattanooga FC had the most players named to the All-NPSL Team for the 2013 season, with a total of four players. This was more than any other team.
The following players were included: GK Greggaa Hartley, Andrew Stewart, Nicholas Chase, and Fynn Glover for defense, middle, and forward, respectively. Along with Hartley, Stewart, and Glover, MF Thibault Charmey was selected to play for the NPSL Supporter’s XI.
Mark Sherrod, a former player for Chattanooga FC, was selected by the Houston Dynamo in the second round of the 2014 MLS SuperDraft. This event marked the beginning of Sherrod’s career in Major League Soccer. The Chattanooga Football Club entered the Women’s Premier Soccer League for the first time this season with a team for its female players.
The women’s team had a successful debut season, finishing with a record of 5-3-2 and a third-place finish in the Southeast. The regular season for Chattanooga FC got off to a sluggish start, but the team finished the year by winning five games in a row to finish the year on top of the division once again, this time by a goal differential over the Atlanta Silverbacks Reserves.
The playoff system was changed to one that consisted of a playoff in 2014 so that the champion of the Southeast could be determined. As the regular season victors, Chattanooga was in charge of hosting the postseason competition. In order to qualify for the Regional Playoffs, Chattanooga had to first defeat Nashville FC by a score of 6-1 and then the New Orleans Jesters by a score of 4-0. Chattanooga was not only the lowest seed in the Regional Playoffs, but they also served as the host city for the Regional Playoffs. After that, Chattanooga prevailed over the top-seeded Miami United F.C. by a score of 2-0 and the Tulsa Athletics by the same score of 2-0 in a replay of the Regional Match from 2013.
The NPSL Championship game from 2010 will be rematch between Chattanooga and Sacramento Gold, which will be played next in Chattanooga. They would eventually come back from being down 0–1 early on to win 4–1, which would put them through to the finals for the third time in the club’s history. The New York Red Bulls U-23 defeated Chattanooga FC by a score of 3–1. Gregory Hartley, who plays goalkeeper, was awarded the NPSL Golden Glove in addition to being named to the All-NPSL team alongside forward Luke Winter.
Winter, who plays forward, also received an honorable mention. In addition to this honor, Head Coach Bill Elliot received the Alexander Arellano Memorial Trophy as the best coach in the NPSL. In March of 2015, outstanding midfielder Niall McCabe signed a contract to play for Louisville City FC. McCabe had a remarkable season in 2014.
In addition, Chattanooga FC was chosen to host the US Soccer Amateur Championships on May 29 and 30, commonly known as the Hank Steinbrecher Trophy. This event is a competition that pits the winners of the PDL, NPSL, and USASA Open and Amateur Championships from the previous year against one another. The CFC began their season in the league in May, and they started strong by winning their first two matches away in Georgia.
The first round of competition in the U.S. Open Cup took place at home against the Ocala Stampede. After Luke Winter scored a late goal to tie the game in regulation, the game went into overtime, where Gregga Hartley made two penalty saves and scored the game-winning goal himself. TheCup.us’ Player of the Round goes to Hartley. Congratulations!
The second round of the Cup was played away at Wilmington Hammerheads, and after the game ended 1-1 in regulation, it went to penalty kicks once more. Chattanooga made all five of their kicks and saved one of Wilmington’s to advance to the third round and play the Atlanta Silverbacks at their home stadium once more. Luke Winter’s header gave Chattanooga FC the lead in the dying minutes of the match, but the referees controversially awarded a penalty kick just one minute later.
In overtime, Atlanta scored the winning goal to earn a 2-1 victory and tie the game. Chattanooga FC met the Maryland Bays, who had won the USASA Open Cup in 2014, for the first game of the Hank Steinbrecher Trophy competition just 2 days after suffering a loss. The next day, Chattanooga defeated the Michigan Bucks, the PDL season champions, 3-0 to claim the trophy, which was Chattanooga FC’s first ever victory. Chattanooga won that game by a score of 2-0.
The NPSL National Championship match between Chattanooga FC and New York Cosmos B took place at Finley Stadium on August 8, 2015 and was hosted by Chattanooga FC. With 18,227 fans in attendance, the game set a new record for the highest attendance in the history of amateur soccer in the United States. The game was won by the Cosmos in extra time by a score of 3–2. Chattanooga FC finished the 2016 season undefeated and top in the Southeast Division with a perfect 9-0 record.
After a 2–1 victory over Memphis City FC in the first round of the Southeast Conference playoffs, the team moved on to the next round. Following their victory over Memphis, Chattanooga FC advanced to the Regional Finals of the NPSL Playoffs, where they defeated Miami United FC 5–3 in a penalty shootout. Chattanooga FC went on to win the championship.
In January of 2017, Chattanooga Football Club made public their intention to participate in international friendlies with the team VfL Wolfsburg, who competes in the Bundesliga in Germany. The collaboration was revealed. In 2018, Chattanooga was awarded a professional franchise in USL League One; the team was eventually given the name Chattanooga Red Wolves. After the new team hired the general manager who was already working for Chattanooga FC at the time, Chattanooga FC accused the new team of attempting to dominate the local market.
The Red Wolves also made a fruitless effort to get a lease at Finley Stadium and gain control of Chattanooga’s youth academy, but neither of these endeavors was successful. In 2019, the city’s women’s squad became part of the Red Wolves franchise after being moved there. The Red Wolves received a letter demanding that they stop using the university’s trademarked name in November 2019, which is also noteworthy.
The letter was delivered by Arkansas State University in response to the East Ridge team’s use of the university’s name. The National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) made the announcement on November 15, 2018, that it would be forming a new, completely professional division, and that Chattanooga would be one of the founding teams in that division.
In preparation for the transition to a professional squad and schedule, Chattanooga kicked off a fan ownership program that was inspired, in part, by the Green Bay Packers. The endeavor resulted in the acquisition of more than $800,000 and approximately 3,000 new club owners from all 50 states and 25 foreign countries. On the 15th of August, 2019, it was revealed that Chattanooga FC would not be joining the United Soccer League but rather the National Independent Soccer Association.
Bill Elliot will transition from his role as coach to that of Technical Director, and Peter Fuller will take over the head coach role full-time in preparation for the team’s move to the professional ranks. It was announced that Jeremy Alumbaugh, formerly the general manager of Saint Louis FC, will serve as the team’s managing director.
Chattanooga FC Stadium
W. Max Finley Stadium is the home field for the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga football team as well as the Chattanooga FC (NISA), a professional soccer team that competes in Division 3 of the National Soccer Association. In addition, a variety of high school sporting events and musical concerts are held in the stadium. It is situated in Chattanooga, which is in the state of Tennessee, in the United States.
The stadium, which first opened its doors in 1997, currently has a capacity of 20,412, and it was the site of the NCAA Division I National Championship Game from the time it first opened until 2009. After that, the game was moved to Pizza Hut Park, which is located in Frisco, Texas, which is a suburb of Dallas. The TSSAA Football Championships are scheduled to take place at the stadium in 2021 and 2022.
The stadium was given its current name in honor of W. Max Finley, a former chairman of the Rock Tenn Corporation. Finley was a graduate of the University of Tennessee system and an avid supporter of the institution. Gordon Lee Davenport was the president and CEO of the Krystal Company from 1975 until 1985. He also served as Chairman of the Stadium Corporation and Campaign, and he worked endlessly and tirelessly in the planning and actual development of the facility. The playing field is named in honor of Davenport, and it was named in his honor. The primary entrance to the stadium features bronze busts of both Finley and Davenport on either side of the doorway.