RICHMOND, VA – (Thursday, January 24, 2013) – The Richmond Kickers are pleased to announce the 2013 professional schedule, opening the season against the Pittsburgh Riverhounds on Saturday, April 6 at 7:00 p.m. The Kickers will call Richmond City Stadium home for the 19th consecutive season.
“We are looking forward to the season immensely,” commented Leigh Cowlishaw, Richmond Kickers Director of Soccer. “With 13 teams visiting City Stadium and the added ingredient of MLS Reserves interleague play, it could prove to be the most competitive and entertaining season ever.”
Featuring six teams with more than a decade of operational experience, and more than 100 years of combined operational experience, USL PRO will field 13 teams in a single-table format, playing a 26-game schedule as the league embarks on a groundbreaking partnership with MLS that features interleague games versus MLS Reserve teams. Two new teams have been added to USL PRO in 2013, with the Phoenix FC Wolves and VSI Tampa Bay FC joining the 11 returning teams from 2012.
Eight of the Kickers 14 regular season home games will be played on Saturdays with four matches taking place under the lights on Fridays. The Kickers will host newcomer VSI Tampa Bay FC on Sunday, July 28 with a Wednesday, August 14 match-up against reigning Regular Season Champions Orlando City rounding out the home schedule. The majority of home games will kick off at 7:00 p.m.
Thanks to the new partnership with Major League Soccer, each of the 13 USL PRO teams will compete in two inter-league games against MLS Reserve League opponents. With the exception of Antigua, which will play both of its games at MLS Reserve teams, USL PRO teams have been paired with a single MLS team to play a home and home series. All inter-league games will count in both the official USL PRO and MLS Reserve League standings. The Kickers will play host to the Vancouver Whitecaps Reserves on Saturday, June 22 and will travel to Vancouver on Tuesday, July 23.
The 2013 USL PRO Playoffs will include the top eight finishers in the table, with the quarterfinals (No. 1 vs. No. 8, No. 2 vs. No. 7, etc.) set for the weekend of August 23-25. The semifinals featuring the four remaining teams will be played the following weekend, with the 2013 USL PRO Championship set for the weekend of September 6-8. All playoff rounds feature a single-game knockout format and teams will not be re-seeded following each round.
Established in 1993, the Richmond Kickers have consistently been one of the most successful professional soccer clubs in America. Over the past 20 seasons, Richmond has qualified for postseason play 18 times, and reached the title match in 2010 for the sixth time in the past nine campaigns, falling just short of the Championship title. Richmond’s seven previous league Championship appearances (1995, 1996, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009) include winning the Premier League title in 1995, a shoot-out loss to Seattle in the USL First Division final in 2005 and taking the USL Second Division crown twice against Charlotte in 2006 and 2009.
Don’t miss a minute of exciting Kickers Pro action as they kick off their 21st season this spring. Richmond Kickers season passes offer unbeatable value, VIP benefits and incredibly low prices to all regular season home games. Guaranteed to see at least 14 highly competitive USL PRO games for the best possible pricing, Kickers games are a fantastic way to get together with friends, family and colleagues for an unforgettable entertainment experience - order now!