HIGH POINT, N.C. (December 6, 2023) - Carolina Core FC, an independent club that will join MLS NEXT Pro in 2024 and play its home matches at Truist Point, has hired Donovan Ricketts as their Goalkeeper Coach. Donovan will be responsible for leading the CCFC Goalkeepers and developing the goalkeeper curriculum for the professional and youth side of the club.
"We are excited and very fortunate to have Donovan join our staff as he is one of the most decorated goalkeepers in the history of MLS. Additionally, he has over 100 matches under his belt in Europe and 100 more with the Jamaican national team. We know that under Donovan, our goalkeepers will receive the best training of any goalkeepers anywhere. We are also thrilled to announce that Donovan will be in charge of implementing the goalkeeping methodology for our new MLS Next program starting next year. What an exciting opportunity for any young goalkeeper in our region," states Eddie Pope, Chief Sporting Officer.
Ricketts started his national team career with Jamaica in 1998. Within that same year, Ricketts was named to Jamaica’s World Cup roster to represent his home country in France. He made 100 appearances for the Jamaican National Team from 1998 to 2013.
Ricketts began his professional club soccer career in 2005, playing for Bradford City AFC in Bradford, West Yorkshire. After 104 appearances for the club under manager, Colin Todd, Ricketts entered MLS in 2009 to play for Los Angeles Galaxy under the leadership of Bruce Arena.
After one year with LA Galaxy, Ricketts was awarded MLS Goalkeeper of the Year in 2010. The following year, Ricketts went on to lead the Galaxy, with the help of David Beckham and Landon Donovan, to win the MLS Cup. Following the Galaxy’s success, Ricketts played briefly for Montreal Impact under Head Coach, Jesse Marsch, before moving to the Portland Timbers in 2012.
Donovan finished his professional career playing with the Portland Timbers from 2012-2014. With the Timbers, he made 70 appearances and earned his second recognition as MLS Goalkeeper of the Year in 2013. At the conclusion of Donovan Ricketts professional playing career, he totaled an astounding 370 match appearances for both club and country.
"I am very excited to have Donovan as part of the technical staff. He brings a lot of experience on and off the field and we welcome him to the team. Donovan has always led with class and will be another experienced coach players can learn and development from," explains Roy Lassiter, Head Coach.
Ricketts will join the CCFC Technical Staff with ample experience as a professional goalkeeper coach. Following his professional player career, Ricketts served as the Goalkeeper Coach for FC Tulsa (formally Tulsa Roughnecks) from 2017-2023. Ricketts even spent 2022 as FC Tulsa’s Interim Head Coach.
ABOUT Carolina Core FC
Founded in 2022, Carolina Core FC is an independent professional men’s soccer club that will begin play in MLS NEXT Pro in 2024. The club’s local owners are dedicated to community development through its on-field and off-field activities. Carolina Core FC has diligently worked behind the scenes to build together its experienced executive staff, including High Point Native, Eddie Pope as the Chief Sporting Officer. Eddie is a former U.S. Men’s National Team, MLS legend and USSF Hall of Famer. #CCFC will play its home matches in High Point, N.C. at Truist Point, the $38 million stadium located in the revitalized downtown social district. Supporters can join the club by securing a season seat and ordering Carolina Core FC merchandise at www.carolinacorefc.com.