A beautiful relationship in the beautiful game continues

Richmond Kickers and D.C. United have extended their affiliation agreement through the 2017 season.

From the Richmond Kickers:

The Richmond Kickers and D.C. United have extended their affiliation agreement through the 2017 season. This is the fourth year of the clubs’ partnership in conjunction with the 2013 agreement forged by Major League Soccer and the USL.

“The MLS/USL partnership has been a catalyst for the growth of our club and we are delighted to sign a two-year agreement with D.C. United,” commented Leigh Cowlishaw, Richmond Kickers Director of Soccer. “The Kickers and D.C. United have led USL club affiliations with 16 players loaned over our last three seasons. It’s important to have the ability to add MLS players to our squad and we expect quality roster additions for the 2016 season.”

“We are extremely excited to extend our partnership with the Richmond Kickers for the next two seasons,” said Dave Kasper, United General Manager and Vice President of Soccer Operations. “They have been fantastic partners who provide a professional environment and have been instrumental in helping our players develop as professionals while out on loan.”

Separated by a little over 100 miles, D.C. United and the Richmond Kickers worked closely to organize loan spells for nearly 20 years before officially affiliating prior to the 2013 season. Over the last three seasons, 16 players from D.C. United featured for the Kickers, including Miguel Aguilar, Jared Jeffrey, Collin Martin, Luke Mishu, Jalen Robinson and Travis Worra who combined for 4,101 minutes in 2015 and Andrew Dykstra who was named USL Goalkeeper of the Year in 2013.

Through the extended arrangement with the Kickers, United will once again send a minimum of four first-team players on long-term loans to Richmond, assignments which will be announced at a later date. Additionally, the Kickers and D.C. United will jointly host open tryouts in Richmond, VA in 2017. Endorsed by D.C. United technical staff, the event is guaranteed to attract high caliber players who will participate in training sessions and showcase games.

Over the past two decades, 34 D.C. United players have played with the Richmond Kickers, with the roster of players including 2011 Major League Soccer MVP Dwayne De Rosario, Mike Burke, Jeff Causey, Ben Crawley, Brian Kamler, Mike McGinty, Mark Simpson, Clyde Simms, Robert Ssejjemba and Richie Williams. Players who have featured with the Kickers on loan include Miguel Aguilar Steven Birnbaum, Brian Carroll, Alex Caskey, Andrew Dykstra, John DiRaimondo, Christiano Francois, Jared Jeffrey, Taylor Kemp, Justin Mapp, Collin Martin, Andy Metcalf, Luke Mishu, Bryan Namoff, Anthony Peters, Kyle Porter, Jalen Robinson, Michael Seaton, Conor Shanosky, Long Tan, Casey Townsend, Ethan White, Joe Willis and Travis Worra. In franchise history, an impressive 22 players have progressed from the Richmond Kickers into Major League Soccer.

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Richard Hayes

When Richard isn’t rounding up neighborhood news, he’s likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest craft beer.

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