The Colombian native joins the club after spending the past five seasons with El Paso Locomotive FC.
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — Jan. 22, 2024 — Chattanooga Football Club (CFC) today announced it has signed Juan Carlos Garzon as the club’s new Director of Goalkeeping.
Garzon spent the past five seasons with El Paso Locomotive FC in the USL Championship, where he was the assistant coach and goalkeeper lead coach. Garzon was the only coach left on staff in 2023 who had been with the club since its inaugural season in 2019. During his time in El Paso, Locomotive FC advanced to the Western Conference Finals two years in a row in 2019 and 2020.
A Colombian native who has been playing soccer nearly his entire life, Garzon also played futsal at a competitive level in Colombia, while he also played and represented the Colombian National Armed Forces soccer team.
“Juan brings experience that will help our goalkeepers, the team and the club,” said Chattanooga Football Club Head Coach and Sporting Director Rod Underwood. “He has a desire to help the club grow and to be part of the community, which is vital to Chattanooga FC.”
Before El Paso, Garzon was the assistant coach and goalkeeping coach for the New Mexico State (NMSU) women’s soccer team, and on the coaching staff at the New Mexico Youth Soccer Association. He was also the director of coaching at Las Cruces Timbers Soccer Club, on the coaching staff of the FC Barcelona Escola USA camp, head coach of Orlando City’s Girls U-12 and U-14 Academy teams and the head coach of the women’s soccer team at Lake Brantley High School in Altamonte Springs, Florida.
“I see myself helping little by little with anything I can with my experience, passion, love and energy to the club,” said Garzon. “I think the organization is going in the right way, and I wanted to be part of that.”
Garzon deeply understands the importance of a club’s mission and place in the community.
“During my time in El Paso I would incorporate goalkeepers from the local UPSL team, who didn’t have goalkeeping coaches. I was able to invite them to my training session and to be part of the team. I also incorporated people from Las Cruces, the NMSU soccer program, so they could see what the professional level looks like.
“For me it’s a pleasure to see their gratitude for having such an opportunity. They learn, and I learn from them, to be honest. I learn from the high school players and the academy players. When the CEO (Alton Byrd) talked with me about the importance of the club’s work in the community, I was like, ‘Alright, let’s do this!’”
ABOUT CHATTANOOGA FOOTBALL CLUB
Chattanooga Football Club was founded in 2009. The CFC Men's team will compete in MLS NEXT Pro starting in 2024. CFC Women is a summer amateur team that competes in the Women's Premier Soccer League (WPSL). Chattanooga Football Club became the first soccer club to offer true ownership to the fans in 2019 with 3,200+ investors from Chattanooga, all 50 states, and 31 countries. CFC plays all home games at Finley Stadium in Chattanooga.
ABOUT MLS NEXT Pro
Launched in 2022 by Major League Soccer, MLS NEXT Pro is a professional men’s soccer league in the United States and Canada that completes the pro player pathway from MLS NEXT to MLS first teams. MLS NEXT Pro continues to grow the game through innovation and diversity, bringing professional soccer to new communities and creating opportunities both on and off the field. MLS NEXT Pro will celebrate its third season in 2024 with 29 teams, 27 MLS-affiliated and two independent, Carolina Core FC and Chattanooga FC. Additional MLS-affiliated and independent clubs will join in the years ahead, including Cleveland and Jacksonville Armada FC. The majority of MLS NEXT Pro’s matches are broadcast on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV as part of the groundbreaking partnership between Apple and MLS. For more information about MLS NEXT Pro, visit mlsnextpro.com.