New Birmingham Legion Football Club head coach Tom Soehn calls for fanbase to be team’s 12th man

General Manager Jay Heaps with new head coach Tom Soehn. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

Members of the Magic City Brigade, the supporters group for the Birmingham Legion Football Club, were smiling from ear to ear during the announcement of Tom Soehn, as the first head coach for the Legion.

“This is really big,” declared one of the members of the Brigade.

Surrounded by the Birmingham Legion ownership group and staff, the Magic City Brigade, youth soccer representatives, players, parents, Legion season ticket holders and even Mayor Randall Woodfin, the city of Birmingham gave Soehn a warm and enthusiastic welcome yesterday afternoon at the Legion office.

Highly respected in professional U.S. Soccer coaching circles, Soehn, 52, has signed a multi-year deal with the Legion, who opens their season in 2019.

“We are excited to announce Tom Soehn as Legion FC’s first head coach,” said Legion FC president and general manager Jay Heaps. “Tommy has won championships as both a player and coach and has proven his ability to develop players while building championship-caliber teams. Just as important, Tommy’s character is of the highest quality, and that will be reflected in the players we have on the field in 2019 and beyond.”

With Mayor Randall Woodfin looking on, Birmingham Legion’s Jay Heaps announced Tom Soehn as the Legion’s new head coach. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

During his remarks to the press and supporters Soehn embraced the growing Birmingham Legion fanbase.

“One thing I’ve learned through all my years of coaching, that the 12th man is everything – the fanbase,” said Soehn. “I can feel that throughout this organization. The passion among our fans, that is something we want to build on. Our team will identify with the fanbase, you are the 12th player, we are going to be one.”

As a coach, Soehn brings an impressive resume to the Magic City winning an MLS Cup and Supporter’s Shield as an assistant coach before claiming a second Shield and a U.S. Open Cup championship as head coach with D.C. United.

Birmingham Legion
Photo from Birmingham Legion Facebook page.

This is the second big announcement in the past month from the Birmingham Legion. In July, the new team signed their first player, hometown soccer star Chandler Hoffman.

Expect additional announcements to follow in the coming months from the Legion. Meanwhile, join Soehn’s and become the 12th man on the team by purchasing inaugural Birmingham Legion season tickets.

Author: Pat Byington

Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.