FC Tucson today announced that Jon Pearlman will be the new head coach for the men’s team, filling the vacancy left by Rick Schantz, who recently became assistant coach for USL side Phoenix Rising.
“Jon and I have worked hand in hand since the beginning,” Schantz said. “He knows the players, the organization, and the team better than any other candidate would have. He’s been coaching for over 20 years in this community, and knows the game at an extremely high level. I expect that Tucson will have continued success under his leadership.”
As general manager of the club, Pearlman has helped scout and recruit each team FC Tucson has fielded since the club’s inception in 2010, which have produced nearly 30 foreign and domestic professional players, including seven currently in Major League Soccer.
“He’s done so much for me, it’s unbelievable,” Real Salt Lake forward and former FC Tucson player Ricardo Velazco said of Pearlman. “The way he coaches is very demanding, which is what a player needs at that stage of development. I owe him a ton, he got me started with RSL.”
Pearlman has served as Executive Director of Tanque Verde Soccer Club for the last 13 years, is a staff coach for the Arizona Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program, and has been a scout for U.S. soccer the last six years.
“Jon is an eminently qualified trainer and manager,” FC Tucson Managing Member Greg Foster said. “He has access to top athletes across the country, and is an excellent evaluator of talent. FC Tucson is fortunate to be able to hire a superior candidate from inside the organization.”