Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the Boys ECNL?

A: The Boys Elite Clubs National League (Boys ECNL) was founded to improve the daily environment for boys youth soccer players through a collaborative club-based development program featuring competition, player identification, and coaching and club development platforms. 

Q: What is Richmond United?

A: Richmond United was established, in 2014, by the Richmond Strikers and Richmond Kickers when the two clubs united their respective U.S. Soccer Development Academy programs to introduce a collaborative Academy program designed to serve the most talented male players in the region.  With over 50 years of combined operational experience and unassailable reputations for success on and off the field, the Richmond Kickers and Richmond Strikers will build upon the tradition of player development that is respected both regionally and nationally.

Q: What is Richmond United's Vision?

A: Richmond United’s vision is to offer the most comprehensive and successful player development environment for soccer in the Central Virginia region. We will inspire our members, strive to achieve excellence and unite our soccer community. We want to be a positive outlier among youth soccer clubs in the US.

Q: What is Richmond United's Mission?

A:  Inspire, support and develop the next generation of passionate soccer players, coaches and fans.

Q: What are Richmond United's Objectives?

A:  Richmond United has three main goals:

  1. To attract the best players from a 75 mile radius of Richmond
  2. To graduate 75% of players to Division I College programs
  3. To produce nationally respected players, coaches and teams

Q: What are Richmond United's Players, Coaches and Staff Attitudes?

A: Richmond United has five Core Principles that are grounded in our Club Philosophy. These Core Principles shape our actions and behavior. We believe that if we follow our Core Principles at all times, we will create an enjoyable and safe environment where all players, coaches, and parents are working together, and in which, excellence will flourish. 

Q: Who will oversee Richmond United?

A: Richmond United will be managed by one of the highest caliber, licensed technical staffs in the country, including Leigh Cowlishaw (Senior Management), Jay Howell (Senior Management) and Sascha Goerres (ECNL Director), who will be responsible for setting and maintaining the Richmond United mission and vision.

Q: Which age groups compete for Richmond United?

A: Richmond United has the following age groups during the 2021-22 soccer calendar:

  • UNDER-13 (players born in 2009)
  • UNDER-14 (players born in 2008)
  • UNDER-15 (players born in 2007)
  • UNDER-16 (players born in 2006)
  • UNDER-17 (players born in 2005)
  • UNDER-19 (players born in 2003 & 2004)

Q: Who will coach the teams?

A: The 2021-22 coaching staff is:

  • UNDER-19: Michael Callahan, USSF A-Youth License
  • UNDER-17: Michael Callahan, USSF A-Youth License
  • UNDER-16: Will Bates, USSF B-License
  • UNDER-15: Will Bates, USSF B-License
  • UNDER-14: Emir Vezjovic, USSF C-License
  • UNDER-13: Sascha Göerres, USSF A-Youth License
  • Goalkeeper Coach - Joseph DeMartino

Furthermore, the technical staff of Richmond United will be enhanced by additional technical support from both the Richmond Kickers and Richmond Strikers.

Q: How many players will be selected?

A: For 11v11 teams, 15-22 full time players are typically selected per team.

Q: Where will Richmond United ECNL teams train and play home games?

A: The Richmond United teams will train four times per week, alternating between Ukrop Park, Capital Park and Glover Park. Richmond United home games will be played at either Ukrop Park, Striker Park or West Creek Soccer fields. During the winter, when grass fields are closed, practices might be held at alternate locations, for example River City Sportsplex and Striker Park.

Q: How often do Richmond United ECNL teams travel?

A: Playing on a Richmond United team requires significant commitment. Teams travel approximately 10-12 times per year with mostly regional league travel (VA, MD, NC, and SC) and some national travel.

Q: How will players be selected and when are tryouts?

A: Richmond United ECNL selects the following year's teams each spring. We do not hold open tryouts in order to select players. Players interested in joining the Richmond United Academy should submit their information through this online form.

Q: Are players required to live in Richmond to play for Richmond United?

A: No, players are not required to live in Richmond. In fact, Richmond United is looking to attract the best players from a 75 mile radius of Richmond. Currently, there are players from as far as Charlottesville, Fredericksburg, Williamsburg, Lynchburg, Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Stafford on Richmond United rosters.  However, all players must realize the significant commitment required to play for a Richmond United Academy team with four training sessions per week in addition to games and travel.

Q: How much does it cost to play on a Richmond United Academy team?

A: In 2021/22, the fees for U13-U14 are $3300; the fees for U15-U19 are $3100. This fee includes the uniform package. Travel related costs (bus, flight, hotel) for overnight away games and showcases are not included. 

Q: Does Richmond United offer Financial Assistance?

A: Yes, we are pleased to be able to offer both full and partial financial assistance to those who qualify. 

Q: What are Richmond United's uniform colors?

A:  Richmond United’s uniforms will be black, blue and white, while incorporating red and orange highlights to represent the traditional colors of the Kickers and Strikers.   Player Uniform Packages will include: 2 uniforms (home and away); training gear: jerseys, shorts, socks; training top and pants; rain jacket; travel polo or travel backpack.

Q: How many Richmond United players have gone on to play D1 College?

A: Since Richmond United's inception in 2014/15, we have graduated over 40 players to Division 1 colleges.

Q: Can Richmond United players train and compete with the Richmond Kickers Professional team?

A:  Yes, NCAA and USL PRO rules allow Richmond United players to play for the Richmond Kickers professional team, while maintaining their collegiate eligibility. Players will have a direct link to the Richmond Kickers pro staff and organization and may earn opportunities to compete with the first team.


All questions related to Richmond United should be directed to Sascha Goerres at sgoerres@richmondutd.com.

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