Nashville SC

Nashville Soccer Club was an American professional soccer team based in Nashville, Tennessee. Founded in 2016, the team made its debut in the United Soccer League, now known as the USL Championship,[lower-alpha 1] in 2018.[1]

Nashville SC
Full nameNashville Soccer Club
FoundedMay 19, 2016 (2016-05-19)
DissolvedNovember 3, 2019 (2019-11-03) (MLS 2020)
StadiumFirst Tennessee Park
OwnerDMD Soccer
Head coachGary Smith
LeagueUSL Championship
20192nd, Eastern Conference
Playoffs: Conference Semifinals
WebsiteClub website

The Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise awarded to Nashville in December 2017, and expected to begin play in 2020, will also be known as Nashville SC.[2]


The club was announced on May 19, 2016. The ownership group consisted of David Dill, president and chief operating officer of LifePoint Health; Christopher Redhage, co-founder of ProviderTrust, a health care software company, and former pro soccer player; and Marcus Whitney, president of Jumpstart Foundry, a health care innovation fund, and former chairman of Nashville FC, the city's existing amateur team.[3]

The team acquired its team name, logo, and color scheme from the amateur Nashville FC, established in 2013, in exchange for a 1 percent equity stake in the USL team and a voting seat on its board.[4] In September 2016, the USL team changed its name to Nashville Soccer Club, or Nashville SC.[5]

Gary Smith, who led the Colorado Rapids to an MLS Cup championship in 2010, was hired as head coach and technical director on April 12, 2017.[6][7]

On March 4, 2017, John Ingram, under the entity Nashville Holdings LLC, bought a majority stake in DMD Soccer, the ownership group of Nashville SC.[8] Ingram also headed up the bid to bring an MLS franchise to Nashville,[9] and the partnership between Ingram and Nashville SC was seen as an effort to present a united front to MLS after Nashville was named one of ten finalist cities for four MLS franchises.[10] On December 20, 2017, Nashville was selected as MLS' 24th franchise.[11] The MLS team will begin play in 2020.[11]

On February 10, 2018, Nashville SC competed in their first game; a preseason exhibition match against Atlanta United FC of MLS.[12] In the rain-soaked contest, Nashville was defeated by Atlanta, 3–1, in front of 9,059 spectators.[13] Forward Ropapa Mensah, the youngest player on the Nashville squad, scored the first goal in franchise history in the 64th minute.[14] Their first regular season game, a 2–0 loss, was played against Louisville City FC on March 17 at Louisville Slugger Field.[15] The club's first regular season home game was played on March 24 against the Pittsburgh Riverhounds at Nissan Stadium.[16] The game was attended by 18,922 people and ended in a scoreless tie.[17] Nashville recorded its first win on March 31 against Bethlehem Steel FC. Forward Michael Cox scored on a penalty kick in the fifth minute to secure the 1–0 win.[18] The same season, NSC got to the USL playoffs but was knocked out in the first round by FC Cincinnati in penalties.


The team played primarily at First Tennessee Park.[19] The stadium's primary tenant is the Nashville Sounds, a Triple-A Minor League Baseball club. It has fixed seating for 8,500 people, but can accommodate up to 10,000 with additional berm space and group areas.[20] The team played their entire 2019 schedule at the park.[21]

During the 2018 season, the team played twice at Nissan Stadium.


Period Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor
2018–2019 Under Armour Nissan


Nashville SC matches were broadcast locally on MYTV30 and nationwide on ESPN+.[22] John Freeman was the play-by-play broadcaster. Color analysts included former Vanderbilt University women's soccer coach Ronnie Woodard,[23] Eddie Carvacho, and local radio host Braden Gall.[24]

Most home and away matches were broadcast live on 94.9 FM Game 2, an ESPN Radio affiliate.[25] Wes Boling was the play-by-play broadcaster.

Spanish-language radio broadcasts were carried by El Jefe 96.7 FM.[26]


Nashville SC's original organized supporter group is The Roadies. Established in February 2014 with the creation of Nashville FC, the city's NPSL amateur franchise with the club's transition from NPSL amateur to USL pro status and accompanying rebranding as NSC, The Roadies similarly transitioned to maintain their support for "Our Town, Our Club".[27] The group supports local charities including Oasis Center and Soccer for the Nations.[28]

The Assembly supporter group was created in early 2017 and has had a presence in the supporters section at games.[28]


As of October 30, 2019
Season USL Championship Play-offs U.S. Open Cup Top scorer Head coach Avg. attendance
P W L D GF GA Pts Pos Player Goals
2018 34 12 9 13 42 31 49 8th, Eastern Conference Quarterfinals Fifth Round Brandon Allen 8 Gary Smith 13,205
2019 34 20 7 7 59 26 67 2nd, Eastern Conference Semifinals Third Round Daniel Ríos 21 Gary Smith 6,999


Front office staff[29]
Chief executive officer Ian Ayre
Vice president of ticketing and sponsorship Michael Schetzel
Vice president of marketing and communications James Cannon
General manager Christopher Jones
Director of operations and supporter relations Ron Deal
Senior director of administration Lindsey Paola
Technical staff[30]
Head coach Gary Smith
Technical director Mike Jacobs
Assistant coach Brett Jacobs
Team administrator and equipment manager Jeff Robben
Performance analyst Agustin Arce Ruiz

Nashville SC U23

Nashville SC established Nashville SC U23, an under-23 team in the league then known as the Premier Development League (PDL) and now as USL League Two (USL 2), in 2016. The club began play in 2017 in order to build a pool of players to feed into the USL club for 2018. Martim Galvão was the only PDL team member who made the USL roster. Its home games were played at Vanderbilt University, on both the football and soccer fields.[31] The club has not fielded a U23 side in either the PDL or USL 2 since 2017.


  1. Nashville SC's league renamed itself as the USL Championship after the 2018 season. At the same time, the league's parent organization, previously known as United Soccer Leagues (plural), changed its name to United Soccer League.


  1. "USL Expanding to Nashville: Music City, USA". United Soccer League. May 19, 2016. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
  2. "Nashville MLS Expansion Team Unveils Name, Crest". Major League Soccer. February 20, 2019. Retrieved February 20, 2019.
  3. Garrison, Joey (May 19, 2016). "Nashville awarded United Soccer League franchise". The Tennessean. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
  4. "USL Formally Welcomes Nashville to League". United Soccer League. July 1, 2016. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  5. "Nashville USL to Play as Nashville Soccer Club". Nashville Soccer Club. September 9, 2016. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  6. "Nashville Unveils Smith as Head Coach". United Soccer League (USL). April 12, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  7. "Gary Smith, MLS Cup-winning coach, to lead Nashville SC". Mike Organ. Nashville Tennessean. April 12, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  8. Garrison, Joey (May 4, 2017). "John Ingram buys majority stake in Nashville SC, aligning efforts for MLS bid". The Tennessean. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  9. Garrison, Joey (December 20, 2016). "Businessman John Ingram to lead Nashville's Major League Soccer bid". The Tennessean. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  10. Garrison, Joey (December 15, 2016). "Nashville among 10 cities under consideration for four MLS expansion teams". The Tennessean. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  11. Garrison, Joey; Organ, Mike (December 20, 2017). "MLS grants Nashville expansion club, propelling Music City from underdog to 'soccer city'". The Tennessean. Nashville. Retrieved December 20, 2017.
  12. "Nashville SC to Host Atlanta United in Historic Exhibition". USL Soccer. November 28, 2017. Retrieved November 28, 2017.
  13. Roberson, Doug (February 10, 2018). "Atlanta United wins preseason opener". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved February 10, 2018.
  14. Luis, Torres (February 10, 2018). "Ropapa Mensah scores the first goal for Nashville SC franchise". The Tennessean. Nashville. Retrieved February 10, 2018.
  15. Learner, Danielle (March 17, 2018). "Louisville City FC begins USL title defense with win over new rival Nashville SC". Louisville Courier Journal. Retrieved March 17, 2018.
  16. "Nashville SC League Home Opener Moved to Nissan Stadium". Nashville SC. February 12, 2018. Retrieved February 12, 2018.
  17. Luis, Torres (March 24, 2018). "Nashville SC plays to draw in first USL home game at Nissan Stadium". The Tennessean. Nashville. Retrieved March 24, 2018.
  18. Ammenheuser, David (March 31, 2018). "Nashville SC posts first win, beats Bethlehem Steel FC". The Tennessean. Nashville. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  19. "Exclusive: Nashville Soccer Club to play inaugural season at First Tennessee Park". The Tennessean. August 22, 2017. Retrieved August 22, 2017.
  20. "Fact Sheet - Highlights of First Tennessee Park Construction Tour". Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County, Tennessee. February 4, 2015. Retrieved February 11, 2015.
  21. "2019 Schedule". Nashville SC. Retrieved February 22, 2019.
  22. SC, Nashville (February 16, 2018). "Nashville SC Partners with Sinclair Broadcast Group to Air 27 USL Games Free of Charge". Nashville SC. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  23. "Vanderbilt Official Athletic Site - Vanderbilt University". Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  24. "United Soccer League". Retrieved June 23, 2018 via YouTube.
  25. "Nashville Soccer Club". The Game Nashville. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  26. "El Jefe 96.7FM – Con todo el poder". Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  27. "The Roadies". Retrieved May 17, 2017.
  28. "Supporters". Nashville SC Website. Retrieved June 23, 2018.
  29. "Front Office Staff". Nashville SC. Retrieved April 13, 2017.
  30. "Coaching Staff". Nashville SC. Retrieved April 13, 2017.
  31. "PDL Introduces Nashville SC U23 as Newest Team". Premier Development League. September 20, 2016. Retrieved September 20, 2016.
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