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Crystal Palace Baltimore
Crystal Palace FC USA.png
Full name Crystal Palace Baltimore
Nickname(s) Eagles
Founded 2006
Stadium UMBC Stadium
Catonsville, Maryland
(Capacity: 5,000)
Chairman United States Randall Medd
Head Coaches United States Jim Cherneski
United States Pete Medd
League USSF Division 2 Professional League
2009 (USL2) Regular Season: 6th
Playoffs: did not qualify
Home colors
Away colors

Crystal Palace Baltimore is an American professional soccer team based in Baltimore, Maryland, United States. It is currently a member of the NASL Division of the USSF Division 2 Professional League, the second tier of the American Soccer Pyramid. The USSF D-2 was created in 2010 by the United States Soccer Federation as a temporary one-season compromise between the feuding North American Soccer League (NASL) and United Soccer Leagues (USL).[1] The team, which was founded in 2006, is part of the player development system for English Football League Championship side Crystal Palace F.C..

It has played its home games at UMBC Stadium on the campus of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County in Catonsville, Maryland since 2008. It is in the preliminary stages of building a 5,000 to 7,000-seat soccer-specific stadium in the Port Covington neighborhood of Baltimore to be constructed by Opening Day Partners.[2] The team colors are red, blue and white. The current managers are Jim Cherneski and Pete Medd.




Genesis of the franchise

Crystal Palace Baltimore was established on May 5, 2006 by Crystal Palace F.C.'s Chairman Simon Jordan, Vice Chairman Dominic Jordan, Chief Executive Phil Alexander, Director of Football Bob Dowie and Cherneski, the new American-based club's Sporting Director. The Baltimore franchise originally intended to be in the USL Premier Development League (PDL).[3] Instead, it joined the USL Second Division (USL-2) when it began playing a full schedule of contests in 2007.[4] The team's original official title was Crystal Palace F.C. USA until January 27, 2010, when it was changed to the more popularly accepted name Crystal Palace Baltimore.[5]

The two Crystal Palaces, head-to-head

Crystal Palace Baltimore's debut, its only match played in 2006, was against its sister club at the United States Naval Academy's Glenn Warner Soccer Facility in Annapolis, Maryland on July 15.[6] The team consisted of the local Maryland-based universities' top players, including Chris Seitz, A. J. DeLaGarza and Maurice Edu.[7] Rade Kokovic scored the Americans' first-ever goal to tie the game in the 30th minute, but the home side eventually lost 3–1.[8]

The second contest between the two squads resulted in Baltimore surrendering a goal in the 28th minute and being shut out 1–0 at Selhurst Park on September 7, 2007.[9]

The third match of the series was played at Regency Furniture Stadium in Waldorf, Maryland on July 13, 2009. Val Teixeira tied the score at one in the 18th minute and Jordan Seabrook brought the team within a goal at 3–2 in the 59th, but the Americans dropped a 5–2 decision.[10]

Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup

In its initial appearance in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup tournament, Crystal Palace Baltimore lost its first-round game to the PDL's Ocean City Barons 1–0 at Carey Stadium in Ocean City, New Jersey on June 12, 2007. The squad played most of the contest with a one-man disadvantage after Harold Urquijo was red carded in the 22nd minute. The lone goal was surrendered just before halftime.[11]

The 2008 run began on June 10 at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, California with a 2–1 win over the PDL's Los Angeles Legends. Pat Healey scored both goals for the winning side, the second one breaking a 1–1 deadlock in the 89th minute.[12] A fortnight later on June 24, Palace earned another away victory by outlasting the Harrisburg City Islanders, a USL-2 rival, in a penalty shootout 2–2 (3–1).[13] Baltimore became the only USL-2 team to advance to the quarterfinals of that year's tournament with a 2–0 upset of Major League Soccer's New York Red Bulls at Broadneck High School in Annapolis on July 1. The goalscorers were Andrew Marshall in the 18th minute and Gary Brooks in the 75th.[14][15] Even though they took the defending Cup champion New England Revolution, another MLS club, to a penalty shootout, Palace's efforts to reach the semifinals fell short 1–1 (3–5) at Veterans Stadium in New Britain, Connecticut on July 8.[16][17]

Postponed a day due to a soggy pitch caused by rainstorms, Baltimore's 2009 first-round contest on June 10 involved the same opponent and stadium as two years earlier. The result was a 3–0 defeat.[18]

United Soccer Leagues Second Division

Crystal Palace Baltimore's 2007 inaugural year in USL-2 began with a four-game losing streak. After dropping a 4–1 decision in its season opener at the Charlotte Eagles on April 20, Palace endured three straight home shutouts. This was followed up by a seven-match undefeated stretch, but with only three victories. They closed out the campaign winning six of its final seven contests, powered by the midseason acquisition of Brooks, the team's leading scorer with seven goals in only nine games.[19] He and Matthew Mbuta, who contributed five goals, were named to the All-League First Team.[20] Baltimore finished in fifth place, but barely missed the playoffs because it was the final season in which only the top four sides qualified.[4]

The beginning of 2008 was the reverse of the previous year as Baltimore ran off five victories, the first four being shutouts.[21] Despite surrendering the same amount of goals as they produced, the ballclub's ascent to fourth place ensured its first postseason appearance.[22] Like in the U.S. Open Cup seven weeks earlier, its first rounder at home with the defending USL-2 champion City Islanders on August 13 was a 2–2 stalemate that was decided by penalty kicks, with Baltimore prevailing 7–6.[23] Three nights later on August 16, they were denied the opportunity to play in the championship match with a 2–1 loss to the top-seeded Eagles in Charlotte.[24] Shintaro Harada, Palace's lone representative on the All-League First Team,[25] scored in the fifth minute for an early lead the squad would take into the second half.[24]

Palace entered 2009 without Brooks, whose contract wasn't renewed even though his seven goals in each of the previous two campaigns led the team both times.[26] Baltimore, scoring a league-low 16 goals, fell to sixth place and missed the playoffs.[27] They were hurt by a pair of slumps. After opening with two wins and a draw, they went without a victory in seven of its next eight contests (1–2–5). They finished winless in six of seven (1–2–4), including being shut out in its final three games. Teixeira was the top scorer with only five goals.[28] The highlight of the season was Harada receiving All-League First Team honors again for leading the circuit's second-best defense.[29]

USSF Division 2 Professional League

Previously expected to move up to the USL First Division (USL-1),[30] Crystal Palace Baltimore announced on November 20, 2009 that they instead would join the new North American Soccer League (NASL).[31] After lawsuits were filed and heated press statements exchanged, the United States Soccer Federation (USSF) declared they would sanction neither the NASL nor USL-1 for the coming year, and ordered both to work together on a plan to temporarily allow its teams to play a 2010 season.[32] The interim solution was announced on January 7, 2010 with the new USSF Division 2 Professional League comprised of clubs from both quarreling circuits.[1]


Year Division League W–D–L GF–GA Points Position Playoffs US Open Cup
2007[19] 3 USL-2 9–5–6 27–20 32 5th[4] Did not qualify First Round
2008[21] 3 USL-2 11–1–8 30–30 34 4th[22] Semifinals Quarterfinals
2009[28] 3 USL-2 6–5–9 16–20 23 6th[27] Did not qualify First Round


Current roster

as at February 11, 2010 Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
3 England DF Paul Robson
5 United States DF Andrew Marshall (vice-captain)
7 Portugal MF Val Teixeira (captain)
9 United States MF Pat Healey
10 United States FW Jordan Seabrook
12 United States MF Dan Lader
15 United States MF Neil Vranis
16 Bolivia DF Zack Flores
23 United States DF Stephen Basso
Brazil FW Adauto Neto
United States MF Korey Veeder
Japan MF Tsuyoshi Yoshitake
No. Position Player
Trinidad and Tobago FW Randi Patterson
Wales DF Shaun Pejic
Brazil FW Lucio Gonzaga
Japan DF Takuro Nishimura
Argentina MF Santiago Fusilier
United States GK Chase Harrison
United States GK Evan Bush
Cameroon MF Matthew Mbuta
Cuba FW Yaikel Perez
Haiti MF Kenold Versailles
Jamaica FW Gary Brooks
Canada DF John Jonke

Notable former players


Position Name Nationality
Chairman: Randall Medd United States American
Founder, Sporting Director and Co-Manager: Jim Cherneski United States American
President and Co-Manager: Pete Medd United States American
Club Administrator: Jen Pagliaro United States American
Vice-President/General Manager: Keith Lupton United States American
Assistant Manager: Todd Wawrousek United States American
Goalkeeping Coach: Karim Moumban Cameroon Cameroonian
Doctor Todd J. Tredinnick United States American
Academy Director Matt Smith United States American


See also


  1. ^ a b "Division 2 Professional League To Operate in 2010," United States Soccer Federation, Thursday, January 7, 2010.
  2. ^ Sharrow, Ryan. "Baltimore pitches Port Covington for soccer stadium," Baltimore Business Journal, Monday, August 3, 2009.
  3. ^ "England's Crystal Palace to launch PDL team," United Soccer Leagues news release, Friday, May 5, 2006.
  4. ^ a b c USL Second Division Final Standings – 2007.
  5. ^ "A Whole New Ballgame for Crystal Palace Baltimore," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Wednesday, January 27, 2010.
  6. ^ "Men's Soccer Trio Joins Crystal Palace Football Club USA," CBS College Sports, Tuesday, July 11, 2006.
  7. ^ Crystal Palace USA v. CPFC; Annapolis, MD; July 15, 2006 – James Calder Photography.
  8. ^ "Eagles start US tour with victory," Croydon Guardian (London, UK), Tuesday, July 18, 2006.
  9. ^ Palace 1 – 0 Palace USA – Crystal Palace F.C.
  10. ^ "Crystal Palace Defeats Crystal Palace," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Monday, July 13, 2009.
  11. ^ "Final score from Ocean City in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup First Round: Ocean City 1–0 CPFC Baltimore," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Tuesday, June 12, 2007.
  12. ^ "Result: Los Angeles Legends 1(0)–Crystal Palace 2(1) US Open Cup 1st Round," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Thursday, June 12, 2008.
  13. ^ "Nelson beats Harrisburg with three of a kind" –
  14. ^ Crystal Palace Baltimore 2–0 New York Red Bulls, Tuesday, July 1, 2008 (box score) – Major League Soccer.
  15. ^ "Result: Crystal Palace 2(1)–New York Red Bulls 0(0) US Open Cup 3rd Round," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Tuesday, July 1, 2008.
  16. ^ New England Revolution 1(5)–(3)1 Crystal Palace Baltimore, Tuesday, July 8, 2008 (box score) – Major League Soccer.
  17. ^ "Result: Revolution 1(1)–Palace 1(1) Revs win 5–3 on penalties US Open Cup Quarterfinal," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Tuesday, July 8, 2008.
  18. ^ "Palace Ousted from Open Cup Again by Ocean City Barons," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Thursday, June 11, 2009.
  19. ^ a b 2007 Season Results & Player Statistics – Crystal Palace Baltimore.
  20. ^ "USL2 All-League Teams announced," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Friday, August 17, 2007.
  21. ^ a b 2008 Season Results & Player Statistics – Crystal Palace Baltimore.
  22. ^ a b USL Second Division Final Standings – 2008.
  23. ^ Harrisburg City Islanders at Crystal Palace Baltimore 2–2 (6–7), Wednesday, August 13, 2008 (box score) – United Soccer Leagues.
  24. ^ a b Crystal Palace Baltimore at Charlotte Eagles 1–2, Saturday, August 16, 2008 (box score) – United Soccer Leagues.
  25. ^ "League Names Three Palace Players to All-League Teams," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Tuesday, August 19, 2008.
  26. ^ "Off-Season Update," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Thursday, October 30, 2008.
  27. ^ a b USL Second Division Final Standings – 2009.
  28. ^ a b 2009 Player Statistics & Season Results – Crystal Palace Baltimore.
  29. ^ "USL Second Division All-League Honors," United Soccer Leagues news release, Monday, August 24, 2009.
  30. ^ "USL statement regarding Tampa, Baltimore," United Soccer Leagues news release, Friday, November 20, 2009.
  31. ^ "Palace Join New Professional Soccer League," Crystal Palace Baltimore, Friday, November 20, 2009.
  32. ^ "U.S. Soccer Board of Directors Votes Unanimously Not to Sanction USL or NASL for Division II Status in 2010," United States Soccer Federation, Wednesday, December 30, 2009.

External links


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