RICHMOND, VA - (Thursday, October 5, 2017) – Former Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club midfielder Chris Durkin is set to represent the United States on the world stage when the FIFA U17 World Cup kicks off this week in India.
Following a seven-day training camp in Dubai, the 21-player U17 squad arrived in New Delhi earlier this week ahead of their opening match against hosts India on Friday, October 6. The team’s other Group A matches will take place on October 9 against Ghana and October 12 against Colombia. The first two games will be played at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi, while the final group game will be played at Dr. DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai. All of the U.S.’s group matches will be broadcast live on FS2 and UNIVERSO.
Returning to Richmond on loan in 2017 for 11 matches, Durkin signed a Homegrown Contract with the Kickers’ official MLS affiliate, D.C. United, last year, becoming the youngest Homegrown Player in club history. He made his first team debut as a 16-year old when he started United’s U.S. Open Cup Fourth Round match in June, going on to make three appearances with the Kickers in 2016
A native of Glen Allen, Virginia, Durkin joined the Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club at the age of 8. Splitting time between the Richmond United Academy and D.C. United Academy, he trained with the Kickers pro team during the 2015 season and featured in the exhibition match against the English Premier League’s West Bromwich Albion as a 15-year old before earning an invitation to U.S. Soccer’s residency program at IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL in January 2016.
The FIFA U17 World Cup will be played in six cities across India: Kochi, Goa, Navi Mumbai, New Delhi, Guwahati, and Kolkata. A total of 24 countries participate in the tournament with the top two teams from each of the six groups, as well as the four best third-place teams, advance to the Round of 16 on October 16, 17, and 18. The championship and third-place matches take place Saturday, Oct. 28, at the 66,600-capacity Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan Stadium in Kolkata.