John Robertson enters his second season with the Blazers as assistant coach.
In UAB Women’s Soccer’s first ever Spring championship season during 2020-21, Robertson played a pivotal role in a bounce-back year that saw the Blazers double their win tally (8) and total goals scored (33) from 2019, despite playing 2 less games. The green and gold also made its return to the Conference USA championship quarter-final, all whilst navigating through the uncertainty of a world pandemic.
In 2020-21, attacker Lexxe Lipsey led C-USA in points (17), shots (49), tied first for goals (8) and ranked 2nd in shots-per-game (3.27) on her way to earning All-Conference USA Second Team. Midfielder Stella Kiss also earned a spot on the All-Conference USA Second Team after finishing the year with 6 goals. In an exciting offensive unit which saw 9 different players score and 13 register assists, Slovakian freshman forward Laura Zemberyova bagged 11 points and tied 3rd in assists (5) on her way to securing All-Freshman First Team honors.
Robertson heads up the Blazers’ high performance mental skills program, leads the goalkeeping unit and assists in all facets of running the program. In his first year back in Birmingham since volunteering in 2018, Robertson also helped freshman keeper Anika Toth rank 4th in the league in saves (42) and save percentage (0.778), while placing second in minutes played (1061:55).
Robertson spent the 2019 season as assistant coach in an historic, championship-winning campaign with NCAA DII University of Montevallo. The Falcons won the Gulf South Conference Tournament and went to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2007 after posting a 14-4-4 record and spending a record 10 consecutive weeks in the regional rankings. He worked closely with defensive stalwarts, Mel Stevens, an All-Region defender, and Hannah Waki, an All-Conference First Team selection. Forward Romee Contreras also picked up All-GSC, D2CCA All-Region, First Team USC All-South honors. In that storied 2019 campaign under Robertson’s tutelage, Sophomore Goalkeeper Annie Mason led the league in overall save percentage (0.894) at the close of GSC play, and ranked 3rd with a 0.74 goals against average. She was named Gulf South Defender of the Week two times while posting five shutouts to double her career tally (10) and got named to the All-Conference Tournament Team for her efforts. The California-native saved her best performance of the year for the GSC Tournament semifinal, posting a career-high 12 saves and forcing three penalty misses in a dramatic shootout against DII powerhouses, West Florida. Montevallo’s success was built on a dynamic attacking philosophy that recorded a program-high 10 regular season conference wins, 50 goals, 18 different players producing at least one point and 14 different goal scorers. The success on and off the field saw him secure United Soccer Coaches' South Region Staff of the Year honors along with head coach Jake Wyman.
Prior to 2019, Robertson volunteered for Blazers Head Coach Erica Demers where he worked primarily with the goalkeepers and defenders. The Blazers secured the third seed in Conference USA regular season play and made it to the tournament quarterfinal. In that 2018 season in the Magic City, he trained Kelsey Daugherty, who would go on to become Conference USA Goalkeeper of the Year as well as being named First Team All-Conference, United Soccer Coaches All-South Region First Team and Conference USA All-Academic First Team. She was named Conference USA Goalkeeper of the Week two times while posting six shutouts and now plays professionally with Djurgårdens IF in the Swedish women’s top flight.
The Fyvie, Scotland, native first joined the Blazers in 2018 after working as the men and women’s assistant coach at his alma-mater, Maryville College (TN), for the 2016 campaign. In another historic campaign, Robertson helped guide the Maryville men to both USA South Conference Regular Season and Conference Tournament glory for the first time in program history, since moving to the conference four years prior. The two trophies and 18 wins secured the Fighting Scots’ first DIII NCAA National Tournament appearance since 2005. Robertson saw All-American forward Caleb Lucas score 21 goals and tally 10 assists in just 21 games. Lucas led the conference in goals (14) and points (52) in the league campaign. Fellow senior Timmy Baker also broke the Maryville All-Time record for assists in a single season (16). Robertson also worked with a young Lady Scots side who led the conference in clean sheets, with 9 in 14 league games on their way to a double-digit win season and a Conference Tournament semi-final run.
A former four-year lettermen with the Fighting Scots himself, Robertson played in defense for a team that was rated as high as 14th in the nation. During his collegiate career, he won three Great South Athletic Conference regular season and conference tournament championships. In 2011, he was named to the Great South Atlantic All-Conference team and voted Team Defensive MVP, and, in his 2012 senior year, Robertson captained his side as the Scots transitioned to the USA South, and he was again an All-Conference selection, the Overall Team MVP, as well as an All-Conference Academic Team and All-Region Team scholar.
Robertson earned a bachelor's degree from Maryville in English Literature with a minor in writing communications in 2013.
After college, Robertson returned home for two years to study and continued to play for Maud Juniors in the Scottish minor leagues, completing his Masters in Journalism from Aberdeen’s Robert Gordon University. He worked as a lead news reporter for daily newspaper, The Press & Journal — serving a readership of 70,000 per day, covering two thirds of Scotland. Then, 2015 saw him travel and work in South Africa, New Zealand and Australia, where he continued his soccer career in Perth, WA, until coaching brought him back to the States.
In 2017, Robertson began his formal coaching education with The FA Level 1 & Level 2 badges in Manchester, England, as well as his FA Goalkeeping Level 1, before transitioning back to the USA to move permanently to Alabama with his wife, Rachel.
He has continued to coach youth soccer locally during his time in Birmingham and is currently on staff for both Alabama ODP and South Region, as well as coaching at Alabama FC and leading Goalkeeping for Hoover SC.
He holds his USSF C License, and a United Soccer Coaches Level 1 in Goalkeeper coaching.
During 2020, Robertson also completed former Manchester United and England coach Eric Steele’s inaugural GK Nexus Coaching Mentorship program.