Tim Howard will be tasked to bring in players to Memphis 901 FC. (Andy Mead/YCJ Photo)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Memphis 901 FC has named minority owner and former U.S. international Tim Howard as sporting director, principal owner Peter Freund and president Craig Unger announced Wednesday.

Howard, who retired as a player after the 2019 Major League Soccer season, will join the front office full-time and direct Memphis 901 FC in selecting players, developing club and technical staff philosophy and setting the benchmark for soccer operations.

“Tim has been integral to our pursuit of excellence,” Freund said. “There is no one who cares more deeply about this organization, this soccer community and its future more than Tim does.”

Memphis 901 FC competes in the USL Championship.

“As a minority owner it’s nice to sit up there in a suite,” Howard said. “[But] by the nature of who I am, my competitive spirit, the goalkeeper in me, this role (of sporting director) has given me an excitement that mimics playing.”

Howard, a former MetroStar and a native of North Brunswick, N.J. brings years of soccer experience to this role within the team, in the U.S. and internationally, including 121 U.S. mmen’s national team caps and 13 years in the English Premier League.

“The wealth of knowledge and experience Tim brings to this role cannot be replicated,” Unger said. “I look forward to working with Tim to building upon our success of our inaugural season.”

Memphis 901 FC also has brought assistant sporting director James Roeling on as an addition to the executive staff. Roeling had held the position of senior manager of team operations for the Colorado Rapids, where he spent the last six seasons.

Memphis already has announced nine returning players from last season. Howard and Roeling will be tasked with filling the roster before 901 FC’s home opener on March 7 at AutoZone Park.

“I have a vision of what I want the club to be,” Howard said. “My goal is to learn, get better and keep pushing. I want to bring this team a championship.”