Fernando Clavijo

Fernando Caetano Clavijo Cedrés (January 23, 1956 – February 8, 2019) was a Uruguayan-American soccer defender and former head coach of the New England Revolution and Colorado Rapids of Major League Soccer. He played three seasons in the American Soccer League, two in the North American Soccer League and ten in the Major Indoor Soccer League. He earned 61 caps with the United States men's national soccer team and eight with the U.S. national futsal team. He later coached both indoor and outdoor teams as well as at the national team level with Nigeria and Haiti. He was a member of the National Soccer Hall of Fame and is a 2014 inductee into the Indoor Soccer Hall of Fame.[1][2]

Fernando Clavijo
Personal information
Full name Fernando Caetano Clavijo Cedrés
Date of birth (1956-01-23)January 23, 1956
Place of birth Maldonado, Uruguay
Date of death February 8, 2019(2019-02-08) (aged 63)
Place of death Fort Lauderdale, Florida, U.S.
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Position(s) Midfielder / Defender
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1972–1979 Atenas
1979–1981 New York Apollo/United 66 (5)
1981–1983 New York Arrows (indoor) 65 (11)
1983–1984 Golden Bay Earthquakes 40 (1)
1984–1988 San Diego Sockers (indoor) 187 (49)
1988–1989 Los Angeles Lazers (indoor) 46 (10)
1989–1992 St. Louis Storm (indoor) 136 (41)
National team
1990–1994 United States 61 (0)
1992 United States futsal 8 (2)
Teams managed
1991 St. Louis Storm
1995–1997 Seattle SeaDogs
1998–1999 Florida ThunderCats
1998 Nigeria (assistant)
1998 Project 40 (assistant)
1998 U.S. Futsal
1999 MetroStars (assistant)
2000–2002 New England Revolution
2003–2005 Haiti
2005–2008 Colorado Rapids
2009 Miami FC
Representing  United States
Winner CONCACAF Gold Cup 1991
Runner-up CONCACAF Gold Cup 1993
Men's Soccer
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Club careerEdit


Clavijo began his professional playing career at the age of 16 with Uruguayan club Atenas de San Carlos. He spent his six seasons with Atenas at forward. In 1979, Clavijo, at the age of 22, left Uruguay and with his wife moved to the United States taking a job at a New Jersey restaurant. At this time, he started playing amateur soccer at an amateur club when some saw him playing and suggested him to try out for a professional club. After a successful trial, Clavijo signed with New York Apollo of the American Soccer League (ASL). The Apollo changed its name to the New York United between the 1979 and 1980 season. Clavijo then spent two seasons with the United. In 1983, he moved to the San Jose Earthquakes of the North American Soccer League (NASL). In 1984, he was an NASL All-Star with the Earthquakes.[3][4][5]


Clavijo began his indoor soccer career, which rapidly eclipsed his outdoor career, in 1981 with the New York Arrows of Major Indoor Soccer League. The move indoors also brought a change from forward to defender. In 1984, he moved to the San Diego Sockers where he contributed to the Sockers winning three championships in his four years with the team.[5][4][3]

International careerEdit


In 1987, Clavijo became an American citizen. On November 21, 1990, he debuted for the United States in a friendly match against the Soviet Union in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. He then became a key player for the American team, being part of the team that won the 1991 CONCACAF Gold Cup and that represented the United States in their home soil at the 1994 FIFA World Cup. Despite being 38 years old at the time (the oldest player on the American squad), Clavijo started three of the four matches the United States played in the tournament. Playing mostly as a left-back, he was on the field in the 2-1 historic victory against Colombia and in the 1-0 defeat against Brazil in the Round of 16. After the World Cup, Clavijo retired from professional soccer having represented the United States on 61 occasions in only five years of international career.[3]


In 1992, he had earned eight caps, scoring two goals, for the United States national futsal team.[6][3][5] He was part of the team that finished second at the 1992 FIFA Futsal World Championship.[3] In 1998, he also served as the head coach of the United States national futsal team.[7]


Clavijo's coaching career began in 1991 with the St. Louis Storm where he was player-coach. In 1994, he became the head coach of the Seattle SeaDogs of the Continental Indoor Soccer League (CISL). In 1997, he was the CISL Coach of the Year. He then moved to the Florida ThunderCats of the National Professional Soccer League. He then assisted ex-US coach Bora Milutinovic with the Nigerian national team at the 1998 FIFA World Cup. He followed Bora to Major League Soccer as well, assisting him with the MetroStars in 1999, the worst season for any team in league history at the time. He left the club after the year, assuming head coaching duties with the New England Revolution in December 1999.[8][2][9][10]

Clavijo brought the Revolution to their second-ever playoff berth his first year in charge. Under his management the franchise finished the 2000 season with a .500 record, the best record in the franchise's history at that time.[11] In his second season in charge the Revolution finished mid-table, but advanced to the 2001 U.S. Open Cup Final, losing away to the Los Angeles GALAXY (in Fullerton, CA.) by 1–2 in extra time.[12] Clavijo was fired midway through the 2002 season.[13]

On October 16, 2003, Clavijo became the head coach of the Haitian national team. He led them through World Cup Qualifying, resigning his position after Haiti lost to Jamaica.[14] On December 22, 2004, the Colorado Rapids hired Clavijo as the team's head coach. Clavijo was inducted into the U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2005.[15][3] Coach Clavijo resigned from the Colorado Rapids on August 20, 2008 after a record in all competitions of 43 wins – 55 losses – 26 draws. Clavijo served as Technical Director for MLS club FC Dallas from 2012 to 2019.[16][17]

Personal lifeEdit

Clavijo died on February 8, 2019, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, after five years with diagnosed multiple myeloma.[18]

Playing statsEdit

MISL stats[19][20]Edit

Year Team GP G A PTS PIM
1981/82 New York 22 2 2 4 8
1982/83 New York 43 9 11 20 12
1984/85 San Diego 39 5 4 9 6
1985/86 San Diego 47 17 9 26 13
1986/87 San Diego 50 16 12 28 12
1987/88 San Diego 51 11 16 27 27
1988/89 Los Angeles 46 10 17 29 29
1989/90 St. Louis 52 17 18 35 10
1990/91 St. Louis 47 15 23 38 18
1991/92 St. Louis 37 9 19 28 4
TOTAL MISL 434 111 131 242 139


Year Team GP G A PTS
1983 Golden Bay 21 0 1 1
1984 Golden Bay 19 1 1 3
TOTAL NASL 40 1 2 4


  1. ^ "Indoor Soccer Hall of Fame | The Turf and Boards". The Turf and Boards. 2017-07-26. Retrieved 2018-06-01.
  2. ^ a b "Fernando Clavijo – USMNT". US Soccer Players. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "World Cup Veteran Defender Fernando Clavijo Passes Away At Age 63". USSF. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  4. ^ a b Kafai, Arman. "Fernando Clavijo: World Cup veteran, Soccer Hall of Famer dies at 63". Pro Soccer USA. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  5. ^ a b c Kennedy, Paul. "Fernando Clavijo (1956-2019): Forty years of contributions as a player, coach and executive". Soccer America. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  6. ^ "The Official Site of U.S. Soccer - Futsal". web.archive.org. 2007-09-27. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2019-02-10.
  7. ^ Litterer, David. "From Player to Coach: Fernando Clavijo's Indoor Soccer Experiences". GoalIndoor magazine. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  8. ^ "MLS's Revolution Name Coach". www.cbsnews.com. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  9. ^ Butler, Dylan. "MLS community mourns the loss of Fernando Clavijo". MLS. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  10. ^ "Former US defender Fernando Clavijo dies at 63". Central Daily. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  11. ^ "2000". www.revolutionsoccer.net. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  12. ^ "2001". www.revolutionsoccer.net. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  13. ^ "Fernando Clavijo, National Soccer Hall of Fame member, dies at 63". ESPN. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  14. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20060909052701/http://www.webster.edu/~corbetre/haiti/misctopic/sports/soccer-new-coach-2003.htm
  15. ^ "FC Dallas makes hall of famer Fernando Clavijo technical director". Sports Day. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  16. ^ "Fernando Clavijo named technical director". www.fcdallas.com. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  17. ^ Carpenter, Les. "How FC Dallas and their homegrown model could revolutionize US soccer". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  18. ^ "Fernando Clavijo, National Soccer Hall of Fame member, dies at 63". ESPN. February 9, 2019. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  19. ^ "Fernando Caetano Clavijo Cedrés". INDOOR SOCCER HALL OF FAME. Retrieved 10 February 2019.
  20. ^ a b "Fernando Clavijo". nasljerseys.com. Retrieved 10 February 2019.

External linksEdit