Columbus Eagles FC is thrilled to announce the hiring of Matt Ogden as the club’s head coach. Ogden, who’s also the head women’s soccer coach at Capital University, becomes the third head coach in CEFC’s history.
Ogden, a native of Preston, England, recently finished his fourth season as the Crusaders’ head coach. Capital won the OAC tournament and advanced to the Division III national tournament in 2015, his first season in charge. He was named OAC and All-Ohio “Coach of the Year” the same year. Capital’s conference record during Ogden’s four years is 28-7-1.
“I’ve followed along with the Eagles,” Ogden said. “Obviously having been so involved with women’s soccer in Columbus, you’re aware of other avenues players have to pursue, so I’ve kept an eye on it and gradually watched it grow. Introductions came between the owner and myself, and here we are.”
Ogden takes over for Daniel Seiffert, who spent two seasons on the Eagles coaching staff. Seiffert presided over the most successful period in club history and amassed a 8-1-2 record in all competitive and friendly matches (5-1-2 in the WPSL). Seiffert – and former club captain Mary Seiffert – now coach on the women’s soccer staff at Indiana Wesleyan University.
“Every time there is a coaching change, there is a bit of apprehension of how we will find the right coach for this team. We look for someone who will have the respect of the players and the ability to challenge them to be the best they can be. In Matt Ogden, we have found that coach,” said Eagles CEO Mark Wise, who coached the Eagles from 2014-17. “With his long history of training the best girls’ and women’s teams in central Ohio, and his ability to ask for and demand the best from his players, he is the right coach at the right time.
“After watching his initial training sessions with the team, I am absolutely positive that we made the right choice in selecting Matt for the job. I am thrilled that he has accepted this position and I look forward to watching the team improve every day.”
A few current Eagles are familiar with their new coach: Kelly DeNiro and Amber Kern played for Ogden’s club teams as teenagers, Monique Hanayik played two years under him at Capital, and Lila Remache is a graduate assistant coach on his current Crusaders’ staff.
“Our first few weeks of training have been great for everyone to acclimate to his coaching style and to give us an idea of what he will be expecting of us this season,” DeNiro – a 2017 WPSL All-Star – said. “His style of play is very possession-oriented and he pushes his players to think about the game in a different way. I’ve known Matt for a very long time, so it’s really exciting to be able to play for him again. He’s the type of coach that pushes everyone to be better at all times, which makes for a really fun and competitive atmosphere. I think we’re all just excited to get this new season going and to keep producing better and better results every year.”
Ogden has already run a handful of practices at SuperKick – the winter training home of the Eagles – as the team prepares for its slate of December indoor friendlies. Columbus will host Cincinnati Sirens FC on December 22 at 7 p.m. at Resolute Athletic Complex. On Dec. 30, the team will hold a youth clinic at 2 p.m. before playing a Black & Gold intrasquad scrimmage at 3:30 p.m. Tickets for those events are on sale now. He says his preferred style of play is one that’s easy on the eyes.
“I love talented players who aren’t afraid to make mistakes,” Ogden said. “One of the big things is: Fail forward. I say that a lot to my players. We want them to have confidence to try things. I’m not going to be somebody who’s going to sit in and let teams come and attack us. We want the ball, we want the ball for long periods of time. We want to put together a program that’s entertaining to watch and that players like to be involved in.”
More About Our New Coach
Ogden played collegiately at the University of Rio Grande. He was named a first-team All-American in 1999 and ended his career as the Red Storm’s single-season record holder for goals scored with 33. In 2010, Ogden became a member of the Rio Grande Athletics Hall of Fame.
Prior to graduating, Ogden played with the Kalamazoo Kingdom of the Premier Development League (PDL). Then, upon graduating with his bachelor’s degree in exercise science, he was drafted by the Indiana Blast of the United Soccer League’s A-League, a Major League Soccer (MLS) affiliate, where he played for one season.
Along with his duties as Capital’s head coach, Ogden has spent the last 18 years working in club soccer and currently works with Ohio Premier (OP). Over his club career Ogden’s teams have won four state championships and qualified for 3 ECNL national finals.