- U.S. National Team: U.S. Men
- Position: Goalkeeper Coach
- Date Of Birth: Nov. 14, 1959
- Hometown: Boston, England
Chris Woods possesses decades of goalkeeping knowledge and brings his expertise to Jurgen Klinsmann’s staff, having played and coached at the highest level of English soccer. Woods joined the U.S. Men’s National Team staff in October as the goalkeeper coach.
Woods enjoyed a playing career that lasted more than 20 years and included multiple league championships and two FIFA World Cups. Woods began his career as an apprentice goalkeeper at Nottingham Forest in 1976. He earned the chance to make an impression in the 1978 Football League Cup as Forest reached the final against Liverpool. Woods kept a clean sheet in the first game – which ended 0-0 – and the replay as Forest went on to win the Cup in a 1-0 victory. The 18-year-old became the youngest player to appear in a League Cup final.
Woods left Forest in 1979 to join Queens Park Rangers, where he made 63 appearances before signing with Norwich City. There, Woods established himself as the first-choice goalkeeper, putting in more than 200 performances in his time with the club. At Norwich, he won his second League Cup championship after his side defeated Sunderland 1-0 at Wembley in 1985 and minded the posts as the team earned promotion to the First Division.
Woods signed for Rangers in 1986 and won both the Scottish Premier League and the Scottish League Cup in his first season. During that same season, Woods played 1,196 minutes from November to January without conceding a goal, setting a new British record. By the time he left Rangers in 1991, he had won the Scottish Premier League and the Scottish League Cup an additional three times each.
Woods signed with Sheffield Wednesday and returned to English football for the next five seasons, including a year on loan with Reading, before he came to the U.S. and joined the Colorado Rapids. Woods spent a year in MLS and returned to England to see out his playing career. He retired in 1998.
With the England National Team, Woods became a two-time World Cup veteran, traveling to Mexico in 1986 and Italy in 1990. He was between the posts as England qualified for two European Championships, and Woods was the first-choice goalie for the 1992 tournament, keeping clean sheets in his first two games of the competition. Over his international career, Woods accumulated 43 caps, both his first and last coming against the U.S.
After his retirement from goalkeeping, Woods linked up with his former Rangers head coach Walter Smith, who was then the manager at Everton. Woods remained at Everton, guiding some of England and the U.S.’s top goalkeeping talents including Nigel Martyn, Richard Wright and Tim Howard.