CFC signs Dalton star Damian Rodriguez, adds college scholarship and donation to North GA Soccer Academy

Dalton, GA (December 20, 2021 CHATTANOOGFC.com) — This time last year, Damian Rodriguez was a Dalton High School senior who loved the beautiful game. Today, the midfielder is a professional soccer player. Chattanooga FC is thrilled to welcome their first truly home grown player into the professional ranks, pending USSF and league approval.

“I’m excited and blessed to start my professional career at a great club with an amazing fan base. I’m grateful to my coaches, family, and friends for always trusting and supporting me!” said Rodriguez.

“This is an exciting day for CFC, the North Georgia Soccer Academy, and for the sport of soccer in our community. Damian has proven over the last almost eighteen months that he has the ambition, discipline, and talent to pursue this opportunity. For a club like CFC to be able to help Damian pursue his dream of becoming a professional player and pursue his college education at the same time is a major step forward as we look to grow opportunities for youth players in the community,” added Jeremy Alumbaugh, Managing Director, Chattanooga FC.

Not only will Damian play professional soccer, but he will be a college student as well. As part of the contract, he will receive an educational stipend to pursue his college studies. Continuing his education on and off the field was important for the club, and the Rodriguez family.

Rodriguez truly rose through the ranks of the greater Chattanooga soccer scene. Damian’s young career includes time with both Chattanooga FC Academy as a blossoming player and more recently with North Georgia Soccer Academy, where his team won two State Cups.

“We are so proud and excited for Damian signing with CFC” said Kerem Daser, Executive Director, North Georgia Soccer Academy. “Damian is a great role model for our younger players. He was the ultimate winner here and one of the hardest working players I have ever worked with. He is so competitive and has super skills and is so explosive. NGSA Nation wish him the best at CFC!”

Damian also excelled for his high school team, winning two state championships with Dalton High School in 2019 and 2021. He was selected to train with Chattanooga FC for the 2020 and 2021 seasons, and fought to earn a starting spot by the end of the 2021 season.

“We are thrilled that Damian is continuing his career with us,” said Rod Underwood, Sporting Director and Head Coach, Chattanooga FC. “He is a high energy, high tempo guy who doesn’t quit, and he will continue to flourish here. We are so proud of our youth development program, and this proves that there is a path for our young players to play at a professional level.”

Young players looking to take the next steps in their careers now have a trailblazer who has cut a path. For more info in local soccer academies affiliated with CFC, visit: