Detroit City FC
|Full name||Detroit City Football Club|
|Head Coach||Ben Pirmann|
|League||National Premier Soccer League|
|Website||Club home page|
Detroit City FC (DCFC) is a semi-professional American soccer club based in Detroit, Michigan that plays in the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL), the fourth tier of the American soccer pyramid. The club played its home matches at Cass Technical High School in downtown Detroit until 2015, before moving to Keyworth Stadium in Hamtramck, a suburb surrounded by Detroit. The club manager is Ben Pirmann, affectionately referred to as "Caesar" by fans.
Detroit City FC has a rivalry with FC Buffalo, and AFC Cleveland with whom it contests the Rust Belt Derby. The team's nickname is Le Rouge, derived from Detroit's French roots and the River Rouge that flows through Detroit and many of its suburbs.
- 1 History
- 2 In The Community
- 3 Club Culture
- 4 Team Image
- 5 Front Office
- 6 Stadium
- 7 Players
- 8 Honors
- 9 Year-by-year
- 10 Historic Record Vs Opponents
- 11 References
- 12 External links
Detroit City FC was started by a group of five Detroit residents who wanted a club of their own that would promote the city and help build community through soccer. In their first season in the NPSL, Detroit City FC finished second in the five team Great Lakes Conference of the Midwest Region. Le Rouge went on to lose 2-1 to AFC Cleveland in the Great Lakes Conference Semi-finals, ending their season with a 5-2-5 record. In December 2012, it was announced that head coach Kylie Stannard and associate coach Cale Wassermann would not be returning for a second season with the team due to other obligations. The following month, Ben Pirmann took over as head coach and Adil Salmoni was hired as associate head coach.
In 2013, Detroit City finished first in the Great Lakes Conference of the Midwest Region and was ranked #1 in the NPSL following an undefeated regular season and a Rust Belt Derby Championship. After beating rival AFC Cleveland for the third time that season in the semi-finals 3-1, DCFC lost to the Erie Admirals, ending the season with a 12-1-1 record.
The club went 8-3-3 in all competitions in 2014 and finished in second place in a newly aligned Great Lakes West Conference of the Midwest Region of the National Premier Soccer League, which is one of two fourth-division soccer leagues in the United States. Detroit City FC made its Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup debut on May 7, losing to RWB Adria in penalty kicks after a 2-2 draw. In the NPSL regular season, the club claimed the Rust Belt Derby trophy for its second-straight year. Additionally, the team extended its home winning streak to 15 games, with its last home loss being in July 2013. In attendance, the club reached its Cass Tech record of 3,884 supporters for its 3-1 win against the Michigan Stars on July 11, 2015.
The 2016 pre-season began with the Keyworth investment drive, which raised $741,250 for restorations and renovations on Keyworth Stadium. On March 10, Detroit City began roster announcements confirming the return of the 2015 Black Arrow MVP Dave Edwardson. Detroit City played its first home game in Keyworth on May 20, 2016 drawing 1-1 against AFC Ann Arbor in front of a record 7,410 supporters. Detroit City saw both record attendances and success in the US Open Cup beating the Michigan Bucks at PKs before falling to Louisville City FC, a professional USL side, also at PKs. The 2016 NPSL season proved less successful, failing to make it to the play-offs and finishing with a 4-4-4 record. In August, Detroit City confirmed Ben Pirmann would return for a fifth season with the club. After the launch of the 2017 season tickets, the club announced from Belfast that the club would face off against Glentoran F.C. in May to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Detroit Cougars. Glentoran FC played in the United Soccer Association as the Detroit Cougars in the 1967 season when they went 3-6-3.
In The Community
Since its beginning in 2012, Detroit City FC has been dedicated to supporting the city of Detroit and building community through its own partnerships and philanthropic missions, as noted in the club's motto, "Passion for our city. Passion for the game."
The club operates the Detroit City Futbol League, a recreational, community-driven adult soccer league in the summer. In 2014, the team announced its first fall recreational adult league, Soktoberfest. Detroit City FC also works with Think Detroit PAL to operate free youth soccer clinics and give free admission to Detroit PAL participants.
Each season, one regular-season home game is dedicated as a fundraiser for a Detroit-area charity. On May 26, 2013, the club's match against Zanesville Athletic benefitted the Wounded Warrior Project and Hooligans for Heroes, a nonprofit started by members of the Northern Guard Supporters. On June 6, 2014, the club became the first American sports team to wear a uniform in support of LGBTQ inclusion in a regulation match. Le Rouge dedicated the June 6th match versus Erie Admirals S.C. to inclusivity in sports, auctioning off the commemorative jerseys to benefit the Ruth Ellis Center, a Highland Park, MI., shelter for at-risk, runaway and homeless LGBTQ youth. For the 2015 season, City donned their alternate kits to support Think Detroit PAL, auctioning the game-worn kits to support youth league soccer in the city. On June 9, 2016 it was announced that the June 25 game against Dayton Dynamo would be their annual charity match, supporting Freedom House Detroit, a non-profit supporting refugees seeking asylum in the United States and Canada.
In 2014, the club announced its partnership with United Way of Southeastern Michigan to support its "Michigan No Kid Hungry" initiative and promote healthy lifestyles for youth in Detroit. On September 7, 2014, City hosted its inaugural Detroit Public Schools Showcase, which featured a friendly match for City followed by a regulation match between Cass Tech High School and Detroit Renaissance High School, with proceeds from the night going toward the boys soccer programs. The club has strong ties with Cass Tech High School, investing thousands of dollars into improving the Cass Tech field, a benefit to both the soccer and football programs. City also presented the Cass Tech girls soccer program with new uniforms early in the 2014 season.
The soccer supporting culture at DCFC matches is made up of several groups, with the largest and most notable being the Northern Guard Supporters.
Known for setting off smoke bombs, marching into the stadium in a parade-like manner, and chanting an established series of songs and cheers, supporters groups have become a staple at Detroit City FC home and away games. Supporters who travel to away games are often referred to as "Rouge Rovers".
Supporters of Detroit City FC, FC Buffalo, and AFC Cleveland formed the 'Rust Belt Derby'. The winner of the Derby is based on the head to head record of the midwestern clubs during regular season NPSL matches. These are typically high pressure games and particular fan favorites, especially by Detroit City FC supporter groups who have been known to greatly antagonize DCFC’s opponents. Cleveland won the inaugural Rust Belt Derby on June 23, 2012 following a 1-1 draw with Detroit. Detroit City FC would come back and win the 2013 Rust Belt Derby trophy after beating FC Buffalo 2-1. The 2014 trophy went to Detroit on goal differential after all three teams finished with a win and a loss in Derby play, and Detroit would win again in 2015 after a 1-1 draw in the FC Buffalo-AFC Cleveland Derby match that Buffalo needed to win by more than a goal to take the trophy.
The end-of-season friendly against the Windsor (Ontario) Stars has become a mainstay of Detroit City FC season fixtures. The final match of the season against Windsor has become a showcase of reserve players for Le Rouge, giving those in attendance a preview of future talent for the next season. It also has become tradition for the Northern Guard Supporters to light off the remainder of their smoke supply from the year as a sendoff for the players and supporters.
More recently, a fierce, cross-league rivalry has developed with the Michigan Bucks, the other major 4th Division team in Metro-Detroit. The two faced off in the Opening Round of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup in 2015 and 2016, with the Bucks winning the first meeting 3-0 and City taking the second meeting in penalties (0-0, 4-3 PK).
In their debut season, Detroit City wore plain rouge (dark red/maroon) as their home kit and gold shirts and white shorts on the road. As is common for low-tier soccer in the United States, these kits featured only numbers on the back and no names. Each shirt had a different front sponsor. Starting in 2013 the home kits remained rouge while the travel kits dropped the gold in favor of white kits with rouge and gold elements. 2013 also had DCFC wear the first set of third kits, specifically for their charity match. These charity kits were grey/black ("urban") camouflage, though starting in 2014 they were black shirts paired with white shorts.
Starting in 2015, the front office chose to move to simpler, more available designs after Nike failed to deliver any kits for sale to the general public during the 2014 season. This trend was reaffirmed in 2016, before the new kits were unveiled. In March it was confirmed that players would be getting assigned numbers for the first time in the team's history.
- Also appeared with the home socks
Kit Supplier, Sponsors, and Charities
|Years||Kit manufacturer||Sponsor||Kit Charity|
|Front Sponsor||Secondary Sponsor(s)|
|2012||Nike||Independent Detroit businesses sponsored individual players||Slows to Go, Michigan Greensafe Products||None|
|2013||None||CorePower, MillKing it Productions||Wounded Warriors|
|2014||Ruth Ellis Foundation|
|2015||Metro Detroit Chevy Dealers Local Marketing Association||Henry Ford Health System, M1 Imaging Center||Detroit PAL|
|2016||M1 Imaging Center, Faygo, Henry Ford Health System||Freedom House Detroit|
- Kylie Stannard (2012)
- Ben Pirmann (2013 – present)
Associate Head Coach
- Cass Technical High School Stadium; Detroit, Michigan (2012–2015)
- Record Attendance: 3,884 (July 11, 2015 vs. Michigan Stars)
- Keyworth Stadium; Hamtramck, Michigan (2016-)
- Record Attendance: 7,410 (May 20, 2016 vs. AFC Ann Arbor)
Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.
Notable Former Players
- Tyler Arnone now with Real Monarchs
- Adam Bedell formerly with Orlando City SC
- Knox Cameron former Columbus Crew forward
- Joey Dillon now with Arizona United
- Keith Lough now with Penicuik Athletic F.C.
- Kofi Opare now with D.C. United
- Fabio Pereira now with Uberlândia Esporte Clube
- Kevin Taylor former PDL Defender of the Year
- Danny Deakin now with Orlando City SC
- Evan Louro now with New York Red Bulls
Black Arrow Award Recipients
At the conclusion of each season fans get to vote for the team's MVP and recipient of the Black Arrow Award. The title of the trophy is taken from the nickname of Gil Heron, a Jamaican footballer who lived in Detroit and became the first ever black player for Celtic F.C..
- 2012: Keith Lough and Josh Rogers
- 2013: Zach Myers
- 2014: Cyrus Saydee
- 2015: David Edwardson
- 2016: Tommy Catalano
- Rust Belt Derby
- Champions (4): 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
|Year||Tier||League||Regular Season||Playoffs||U.S. Open Cup||Avg Attendance|
|2012||4||NPSL||2nd of 5, Midwest-Great Lakes (5-2-5)||Conference Semifinal||Not Eligible||1,295|
|2013||4||NPSL||1st of 6, Midwest-Great Lakes (11-0-1)||Conference Final||Did not qualify||1,715|
|2014||4||NPSL||2nd of 5, Midwest-Great Lakes West (8-3-3)||Did not qualify||First Round||2,857|
|2015||4||NPSL||2nd of 13, Midwest (8-2-2)||Regional Semifinal||First Round||3,528|
|2016||4||NPSL||5th of 7, Midwest-Great Lakes West (4-4-4)||Did not qualify||Second Round||5,208|
2016 NPSL Great Lakes West Conference Standings
|1||Grand Rapids FC (C, Q)||12||7||1||4||21||11||+10||25||2016 NPSL Midwest Region playoffs|
|2||AFC Ann Arbor (Q)||12||6||3||3||19||16||+3||21|
|3||Michigan Stars FC||12||5||3||4||17||13||+4||19|
|5||Detroit City FC||12||4||4||4||24||21||+3||16|
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) head to head; 3) goal differential in head to head results; 4) wins; 5) total goal differential; 6) fewest losses; 7) coin toss
(C) Champion; (Q) Qualified to the phase indicated.
Historic Record Vs Opponents
|*||No games played|
|Opponent||Regular Season||Playoffs||U.S. Open||Total||Played||Win %|
|AFC Ann Arbor||1-0-1||*||*||1-0-1||2||.750|
|Erie Commodores FC[B]||3-2-2||0-1||*||3-3-2||8||.500|
|Fort Pitt FC Regiment||2-0-0||*||*||2-0-0||2||1.000|
|Grand Rapids FC||0-1-1||*||*||0-1-1||2||.250|
|Louisville City FC||*||*||0-0-1 (0-1 PKs)||0-0-1||1||.500|
|Michigan Bucks||*||*||0-1-1 (1-0 PKs)||0-1-1||2||.250|
|Michigan Stars FC[C]||5-2-1||*||*||5-2-1||8||.688|
|Minnesota Twin Stars||1-0-0||*||*||1-0-0||1||1.000|
|Minnesota United FC Reserves||0-0-1||*||*||0-0-1||1||.500|
|RWB Adria||*||*||0-0-1 (0-1 PKs)||0-0-1||1||.500|
|Zanesville Athletic FC||3-0-0||*||*||3-0-0||3||1.000|
|Total||36-11-15||1-3||0-1-3 (1-2 PKs)||37-15-18||70||.657|
- Note: Table includes all competitive matches and does not include friendlies.
- Updated to end of 2016 season
- Foster, Terry (September 10, 2015). "Detroit City FC wants to move to Hamtramck stadium". Detroit News. Retrieved September 17, 2015.
- "DCFCFC Episode 15: Ben Pirmann and Alex Wright". Stitcher. Retrieved 2016-07-15.
- "NPSL soccer: Detroit City FC's first loss ends their season, falling 4-1 to Erie Admirals in playoffs". MLive. Retrieved 2016-03-16.
- "WEEKEND REPORT: DCFC FINISH REGULAR SEASON WITH SHUTOUT WIN". Detroit City FC homepage. Archived from the original on March 21, 2016. Retrieved 2016-03-16.
- "DETROIT CITY FC RAISES $741,250 THROUGH COMMUNITY INVESTMENT CAMPAIGN". Detroit City FC homepage. Retrieved 2016-02-16.
- "Welcome back, Dave Edwardson!". Detroit City FC Twitter. Retrieved 2016-03-16.
- "Detroit City FC beats Bucks in U.S. Open Cup opener". The Detroit News. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
- "Louisville City FC beats Detroit City on PKs". Courier-Journal. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
- "Q&A: Detroit City FC coach expects to return next season". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
- "Detroit City FC to host Glentoran FC for Detroit Cougars Tribute Match on May 27". Detroit City FC homepage. Retrieved 2016-11-27.
- "1967-1968 Detroit Cougars". Fun While it Lasted. Retrieved 2016-11-27.
- "DCFC TAKES DOWN MADISON 56ERS". Detroit City FC homepage. Retrieved 2016-02-16.[permanent dead link]
- "Detroit City FC announces Freedom House as 2016 charity partner". Detroit City FC homepage. Retrieved 2016-06-09.
- "RougeRoversNGS". Rouge Rovers on twitter. Retrieved 2016-03-16.
- "Detroit City FC brings soccer culture and excitement back to downtown". MLive.com. MLive Media Group. Retrieved March 17, 2013.
- "The Rust Belt Derby". Soccer News Day. Soccer News Day. Retrieved June 26, 2012.
- "Episode 15 – Ben Pirmann and Alex Wright". Detroit City FC Fan Cast. Archived from the original on February 27, 2016. Retrieved 23 February 2016.
- "Confirmation of Assigned Numbers". Detroit City FC Twitter. Retrieved 22 March 2016.
- Gerald Barnhart. "NPSL announces four of 6.5 US Open Cup berths for 2012 tournament". TheCup.us. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
- Josh Hakala (April 9, 2013). "Great Lakes Division teams decline 2013 US Open Cup berths as NPSL entries finalized". TheCup.us. Retrieved May 7, 2013.
- "Boys in Rouge: Number Crunchin'".
- Andrew Goode. "Number Crunchin' 2015 Attendance".
- Andrew Goode. "Speramus Meliora". Retrieved July 28, 2016.