The Dutch Lions Capital Group B.V. was founded in October 2009 by Mike Mossel, Erik Tammer and Peter van der Molen. Besides two investment companies they also founded Dayton Dutch Lions FC LLC and purchased a license to play professional soccer in the United Soccer Leagues (USL) in Dayton (Ohio). Eight more clubs were added since then. There are currently nine Dutch Lions FC clubs in the USA: Dayton Dutch Lions FC (2009), Houston Dutch Lions FC (2011), Cincinnati Dutch Lions FC (2013), Florida Gulf Coast Dutch Lions FC (2015), New York Dutch Lions FC (2016), Miami Dutch Lions FC (2019), Chicago Dutch Lions FC (2020), SoCal Dutch Lions FC (2021) and Washington Dutch Lions FC (2021). Dutch Lions FC was also co-founder and initial minority owner of MLS club FC Cincinnati. Since the start, more than 70 investors have joined one or more Dutch Lions FC organizations.
Dayton Dutch Lions FC was founded in 2009 has a men’s team and a women’s team. The men’s team that plays in the USL2, which is considered 4th division. The men’s team began to play in 2010 in the USL PDL (now called USL2). The club also added a women’s team in 2011 that played in the W-League of the USL. After the W-league folded, the team started playing in the WPSL, which is considered 2nd division. The men’s team started in USL PDL as one of the few PRO teams, and were awarded the “USL Progress of the Year Award” averaging 1,200 fans per game. The season opener in 2010 vs Global United, a team of former world stars, drew 3,400 fans in Bellbrook High School stadium. The club was asked to join USL PRO (2nd division, now called USL Championship) in their second year, where they played for four years before returning to USL PDL in 2015. Highlights were making the playoffs in 2013 after a winning record and qualifying for the final eight in the US Open Cup in 2012 after beating Chicago Fire (USL PDL), Columbus Crew (MLS) and Michigan Bucks (USL PDL) on the road. In the quarterfinal the team travelled to Kansas where they played eventual champions Sporting Kansas City of MLS in front of 17,000 fans. They also had a formal partnership with Columbus Crew with Head Coach Greg Berhalter. In 2018 the team won the USL Conference Championship. The women’s team has been successful with two Conference Championships and also being awarded “USL Organization of the Year Award” in 2013. Several players (Emilie Fillion, Brittany Persaud, Alex Warren) of the team went overseas to play professionally in Europe (the Netherlands and Germany) and Rose Lavelle, who played two years for the team, won the World Cup with the USWNT as well as the Bronze ball in 2018. In 2014 the club opened the renovated West Carrollton High School stadium financing an artificial turf field in the stadium as part of a 30 year partnership. Two times FIFA Best Player of the World Ruud Gullit opened the game vs LA Galaxies II. The club also had a prestigious youth academy since 2010 with over 350 kids, but terminated that program in 2018.
Houston Dutch Lions FC was founded in 2011 and has Youth Academy. They also used to have a men’s team. They started in 2011 and initially played in the USL PDL but transferred to the NPSL in 2016. The team won the Conference Championship in 2016 and made it to the final four playing Chattanooga in front of 7,000 fans. In 2017 they made it to the third round of the US Open Cup and had a close 1-2 loss vs San Antonio (USL PRO). The club built a state of the art soccer complex including two artificial turf fields, a clubhouse, locker rooms and a restaurant.
Cincinnati Dutch Lions FC was founded in 2013 and has a men’s team that plays in the USL2 since 2014. The opening game at Xavier University drew almost 650 fans with Ruud Gullit also doing the kick-off. The first two years the team qualified for the playoffs. Since 2017 they play their home games at NKU University in Kentucky. In 2017 they also opened a sportsbar called “House of Orange”. Former right-back Kyle Smith currently plays in the MLS for Orlando City. The club did not play in 2020 and 2021 due to covid.
Florida Gulf Coast Dutch Lions FC was founded in 2015 and has a women’s team that competes in the WPSL. The club started with a Youth Academy and added a men’s team in 2016 only playing exhibition games. In 2017 a women’s team was added. The opening game in 2017 had close to 700 fans in attendance. In 2018 the team won the WPSL Sunshine Conference Championship. The women’s team has an official partnership with Dutch Premier League club ADO Den Haag. Two players – Monique Elliot (2017) and Emelie Liljered (2020) – have gone on trial with them. In 2020 the club stopped their Youth Academy program that had over 200 kids. After the 2022 season, Joy Kersten signed a pro contract with Genk in Belgium, Caroliena Wolters signed a pro contract with Fortuna Sittard in The Netherlands, while 2021 player Kelley Giddes signed a pro contract in Albania. They play their home games at Bishop Verot Catholic High School in Fort Myers.
New York Dutch Lions FC was founded in 2016. In their initial year they focused on a training academy and school clinics. In 2017 they started organizing annual games in New York with former Dutch National Team players. In 2017 the team, led by coaches Coach Wim Rijsbergen and John de Wolf, played New York Cosmos B at MCU Park (as part of a double header with New York Cosmos’ NASL team) and Central Park Soccer, a team of Dutch expats. In 2018 the team, led by Head Coach Gerard van der Lem, played New York Red Bulls U23 and Central Park Soccer. In 2019 the team, led by coaches John Rep and Foppe de Haan, played Central Park Soccer. The project was canceled in 2020-22 due to covid. In 2021, the club added a women’s team that joined the WPSL in the 2022 season. They play their home games at Long Island University (LIU).
Miami Dutch Lions FC was founded in 2019. The club has a men’s team that plays in the NPSL, which is considered the 4th division. The club is led by Director of Soccer Operations Hans van de Haar. In 2021, after the 2020 season being canceled due to covid restrictions, the team finished 2nd in the Sunshine Conference after being on top of the league the whole season. They did qualify for the play-offs but were eliminated in round one. They play their home games at Ted Hendrick Stadium in Hialeah.
SoCal Dutch Lions FC was originally founded in 2020 as Oceanside Dutch Lions FC. In 2022 the club changed their name to SoCal Dutch Lions FC to have a more regional approach. The club has a women’s team that plays in the WPSL. In their 2021 inaugural season the team finished 3rd in their Conference but were awarded the Best Franchise of the Year Award. After their first season, Genesis Castrellon signed a pro contract in Austria. After the 2022 season, Head Coach Patchy Toledo signed a contract with US Soccer to become the head coach of the USYNT U16 women’s team. They play their home games at Army and Navy Stadium in Carlsbad.
Chicago Dutch Lions FC was also founded in 2020. The club has a Women’s team that plays in the WPSL, which is considered the 2nd division. In their 2021 inaugural season the team finished 2nd in a strong Conference with powerhouse Chicago Red Stars Reserves. The club was also awarded the WPSL Best Franchise of the Year Award while Nikhil Erlebach was awarded Best Coach of the Year Award. In 2022 the club also joined the USL with both a men’s team competing in USL League Two (4th division) and USL W league (2nd division). After the 2022 season, goalkeeper Bob van der Hoek signed a pro contract with Dutch Premier League club Fortuna Sittard. They play their home games at Wheaton College Joe Bean Stadium in Wheaton.
Washington Dutch Lions FC was founded in 2021. The club has a women’s team that plays in the WPSL. In their 2021 inaugural season the team won the Conference Championship after a thrilling 0-1 win vs n2 SJEB FC in the final game of the season. After the 2021 season, Dakota Chan went on trial with Dutch Premier League club ADO Den Haag. They play their home games at RFK Academy Campus in Washington.
Dutch Lions FC was also co-founder and initial minority owner of FC Cincinnati. The club was founded in 2015 and started playing in USL PRO in 2016. The first home game was played in April 2016 with 14,658 fans in attendance. That same season the team drew 35,061 fans in an exhibition game vs Crystal Palace. In 2017 the team averaged 21,696 fans per home game, including 33,250 vs New York Red Bulls of MLS in a thrilling US Open Cup game in the semi-final. The season also included an historic penalty shootout win vs Chicago Fire of MLS in front of 32,287 fans. In 2018, the club surpassed 17,000 season tickets and averaged 25,000 fans per home game. After the attendance records and completing an innovative plan to build a new, state-of-the-art soccer stadium, Cincinnati was awarded a Major League Soccer expansion team on May 29, 2018 by MLS Commissioner Don Garber. In 2019 the team averaged 28,500 fans per home game. The new stadium opened in March 2021.
Tammer Sportmanagement B.V. is owned by Erik Tammer who is a former professional player for premier league clubs such as AFC Ajax Amsterdam, SC Heerenveen en Sparta Rotterdam. Erik is also scout for AFC Ajax.
Mossel Sportmanagement B.V. is owned by Mike Mossel. His company advises individuals and companies on performance improvement. He is also teaching several classes at Avans University in Breda. Mike played for 2nd division clubs RBC Roosendaal (the Netherlands), KFC Turnhout (Belgium) and Cincinnati Riverhawks (USA) and graduated from Xavier University in Cincinnati (Ohio). Mike is currently also the European Scout for FC Cincinnati (MLS) and since 2017 also “Red Talent Trainer” at Royal Antwerp FC (PL) in Belgium.
Both Erik and Mike went through the KNVB UEFA C and UEFA B Pro (former professional players) coaching courses together.
Founders Mike Mossel & Erik Tammer