Langley, BC – Vancouver FC midfielder Grady McDonnell has earned his second call-up for the Republic of Ireland in 2024, after he was included in the Men’s U-17 squad that will face Hungary and Denmark in a pair of international friendlies later this month.
McDonnell, 15, will join the Boys in Green in Pinatar, Spain for a week-long camp, which features friendly matches against Hungary on Wednesday, Feb. 14 and Denmark on Saturday, Feb. 17, which coincides with McDonnell’s sixteenth birthday.
The friendlies will serve as preparation for the upcoming UEFA European Under-17 Championship Elite Round Qualifiers, which begin in March. The Republic of Ireland will compete in Group 5 at the Qualifiers, facing Portugal, Germany, and Croatia as it looks to qualify for the UEFA European Under-17 Championship.
McDonnell most recently represented the Republic of Ireland for the country’s U-16 team at the Aegean Cup in January 2024. He appeared in all three matches at the tournament and scored the fourth goal in a 6-0 victory over Greece.
McDonnell, who is eligible to represent the Republic of Ireland because of his father’s heritage, earned his first international call-up for the Boys in Green in September 2022 at the U-15 level. He has since made appearances for the country’s U-16 and U-17 squads.
Vancouver announced the addition of McDonnell to its squad on Jan. 17, which cemented the native of Surrey, B.C. as the youngest signing in Canadian Premier League (CPL) history, claiming the prestigious record from its previous holder, and VFC teammate, Taryck ‘TJ’ Tahid. McDonnell’s signing was part of an influx of local talent to Vancouver’s 2024 roster, including defenders Paris Gee and David Norman and midfielder Ben Fisk. VFC’s current roster includes nine B.C.-born players.
McDonnell and VFC will kick off the 2024 CPL season on Sunday, Apr. 14 for the Eagles’ home opener against Valour FC. Tickets to that match and the rest of Vancouver’s home matches can be found online.
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