Kelvin Leerdam

Kelvin Leerdam (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈkɛlvɪn leːrˈdɑm]; born 24 June 1990) is a Dutch-Surinamese footballer who plays as a right-back or defensive midfielder for Seattle Sounders FC.

Kelvin Leerdam
Leerdam with Sounders FC in July 2017
Personal information
Full name Kelvin Leerdam
Date of birth (1990-06-24) 24 June 1990
Place of birth Paramaribo, Suriname
Height 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
Playing position Right-back
Club information
Current team
Seattle Sounders FC
Number 18
Youth career
USV Elinkwijk
2005–2008 Feyenoord
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2008–2013 Feyenoord 97 (5)
2013–2017 Vitesse 89 (12)
2017– Seattle Sounders FC 81 (7)
National team
2009 Netherlands U19 3 (0)
2010–2013 Netherlands U21 19 (1)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 14:00, 20 October 2019 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 18:06, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

Club career

Early career

Leerdam was born in Paramaribo, the capital and largest city of Suriname. Leerdam has a close relationship with his mother and has one younger sister.[1]

Leerdam started his career at local Utrecht club USV Elinkwijk. Feyenoord followed the midfielder for many years and eventually joined the Feyenoord youth academy in the season 2005–06.

Coming from an amateur side, Leerdam had a difficult start in the Feyenoord youth. The first two seasons he was mainly used as a substitute. Leerdam joined a successful generation in Feyenoord U17, where he had to compete with players like Leroy Fer, Georginio Wijnaldum and Kevin Wattamaleo for a place on the midfield. After two years, when other players took their chance on a higher level, Leerdam became a regular starter in the U19 team. Thanks to his hard work and dedication, Leerdam eventually made it to Feyenoord's first team squad as well. In January 2007, Leerdam was invited to the first team's training camp in Belek, Turkey, by Feyenoord manager Erwin Koeman.[2] On 6 June 2008, Leerdam signed his first professional contract until 2011.[3]


Leerdam had his breakthrough in the season 2008–09. On 13 November 2008, Leerdam made his official debut in Feyenoord's first team. Leerdam replaced Karim El Ahmadi in the 69th minute of the KNVB Cup away match against HHC Hardenberg (1–5).[4] Leerdam made his Eredivisie debut on 16 November 2008. Leerdam replaced Georginio Wijnaldum in the 87th minute in the away match against FC Twente (1–1).[5] On 27 November 2008, Leerdam also made his European debut. In the UEFA Cup away match against Deportivo la Coruña (3–0), Leerdam replaced Karim El Ahmadi in the 56th minute.[6]

On 1 February 2009, Leerdam had a place in the starting line-up for the first time. When Giovanni van Bronckhorst got injured during the warm-up before the Eredivisie match against N.E.C., Leerdam replaced him as left-back.[7] On 12 April 2009, Leerdam made his first and only goal for Feyenoord, in the home match against Heracles Almelo.[8]

In the season 2009–10, Leerdam was candidate to leave Feyenoord on loan for Excelsior. Because of the departure of the right-backs Theo Lucius, Serginho Greene and Dwight Tiendalli, Leerdam remained at Feyenoord and is mainly used as the stand-in for first team right-back Dani Fernández.[9]


On 14 January 2013, he signed a pre-contract deal with Vitesse.[10] On 2 July, it was announced that Leerdam signed a three-year deal with the Arnhem club.[11] On 1 August 2013, Leerdam made his Vitesse debut in their UEFA Europa League qualifier tie against Petrolul Ploiești, in which Leerdam featured for the entire 90 minutes during the 1–1 draw.[12] Three days later, Leerdam scored on his league debut for Vitesse in their 3–1 home victory over Heracles Almelo, netting the opener in the 27th minute.[13] Leerdam went onto score eight times in total during the 2013–14 campaign and started to attract interest from Vitesse's feeder club, Chelsea during January 2014.[14]

During the 2015–16 campaign, Leerdam was dropped by interim-manager Rob Maas for the foreseeable future after the full-back discredited Vitesse in a recent interview.[15] Leerdam therefore, failed to feature again for Vitesse until the following campaign, when Rob Maas was replaced by Henk Fraser. On 31 March 2017, it was announced that Leerdam would leave Vitesse along with Arshak Koryan, Wouter Dronkers and Ewout Gouw at the end of their current deals in June 2017.[16]

He played as Vitesse won the final of the KNVB Beker 2-0 against AZ Alkmaar on 30 April 2017 to lead the club, 3-time runners up, to the title for the first time in its 125-year history.[17][18]

Seattle Sounders FC

On 1 July 2017, Leerdam joined American side Seattle Sounders FC preceding his release from Vitesse.[19]

On November 10, 2019, Leerdam scored the opening goal for Seattle in a 3–1 home win over Toronto FC in the 2019 MLS Cup Final, after his shot was deflected by Toronto defender Justin Morrow.[20]

International career

Leerdam made his first appearance on international level in the Netherlands U19. The Dutch team missed out on a place at the 2009 UEFA European Under-19 Football Championship in Ukraine by the narrowest of margins. The Netherlands U19 finished second in the qualifying elite round behind Slovenia U19, with one goal difference.[21]

Leerdam decided to represent Suriname, the country of his birth, at the senior level. He was called up to the Suriname national football team for the first time in November 2019.[22]

Career statistics

As of match played 9 December 2017.[23]
Club Season League Cup Continental Other Total
Feyenoord 2008–09 Eredivisie 161102[lower-alpha 1]02[lower-alpha 2]0211
2009–10 Eredivisie 17030200
2010–11 Eredivisie 223101[lower-alpha 3]0243
2011–12 Eredivisie 31110321
2012–13 Eredivisie 110104[lower-alpha 4]0160
Total 9757070201075
Vitesse 2013–14 Eredivisie 268202[lower-alpha 3]02[lower-alpha 2]0328
2014–15 Eredivisie 20230232
2015–16 Eredivisie 151102[lower-alpha 3]0181
2016–17 Eredivisie 28151332
Total 8912111402010613
Seattle Sounders FC 2017 Major League Soccer 201201
2018 Major League Soccer 28 0 28 0
2019 Major League Soccer 33 6 1 0 34 6
Total 81 7 82 7
Career total 206241921104029525
  1. Appearance(s) in UEFA Cup
  2. Appearance(s) in Eredivisie European play-offs
  3. Appearance(s) in UEFA Europa League
  4. Two appearances in UEFA Champions League, two in UEFA Europa League




Seattle Sounders FC


  1. Feyenoord TV (13 January 2009). Kelvin Leerdam interview (Television production). Belek, Turkey.
  2. "Talent in Turkije (3): Kelvin Leerdam" [Talent in Turkey (3): Kelvin Leerdam]. (in Dutch). 9 January 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  3. "Feyenoord contracteert talenten" [Feyenoord contracts talents]. (in Dutch). 10 June 2008. Retrieved 7 October 2009.
  4. "Feyenoord bekert verder na zege op HHC: 1–5" [Feyenoord in next round after victory on HHC: 1–5]. (in Dutch). 13 November 2008. Archived from the original on 8 March 2012. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  5. "FC Twente en Feyenoord in evenwicht: 1–1" [FC Twente and Feyenoord in balance: 1–1]. (in Dutch). 16 November 2008. Archived from the original on 8 March 2012. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  6. "Feyenoord uitgeschakeld in UEFA Cup" [Feyenoord eliminated in UEFA Cup]. (in Dutch). 27 November 2008. Archived from the original on 8 March 2012. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  7. "Gemengde gevoelens voor Nieveld en Leerdam" [Mixed feelings for Nieveld and Leerdam]. (in Dutch). 1 February 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  8. "Leerdam blij met eerste goal in Feyenoord één" [Leerdam happy with first goal in Feyenoord one]. (in Dutch). 12 April 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  9. "Leerdam: "Zorgen dat we in De Kuip niets verliezen"" [Leerdam: "We have to ensure we lose nothing in De Kuip"]. (in Dutch). 20 August 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  10. Transfervrije Leerdam verruilt Feyenoord voor Vitesse; Voetbal International, 14 January 2013 (in Dutch)
  11. Vitesse trots: Kelvin Leerdam Vitessenaar (Vitesse challenge: Kevin Leerdam to Vitesse);, 2 July 2013 (in Dutch)
  12. "Petrolul Ploiești vs. Vitesse". Soccerway. 1 August 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  13. "Vitesse vs. Heracles". Soccerway. 4 August 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  14. "Chelsea watching Vitesse dynamo Kelvin Leerdam". Tribal Football. 21 January 2014. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  15. "Vitesse traveling without punished Leerdam to Groningen". FC Update. 18 March 2016. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  16. "Expiring contracts at Vitesse". Vitesse Official Site. 31 March 2017. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  19. Krasnoo, Ryan (1 July 2017). "Seattle Sounders sign 27-year-old Dutch fullback Kelvin Leerdam". Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  20. Armstrong, Laura (10 November 2019). "Toronto FC cries foul after MLS Cup letdown". The Toronto Star. Retrieved 11 November 2019.
  21. "Slender victory not enough for Netherlands". UEFA. 9 June 2009. Retrieved 30 September 2009.
  22. "Eleven Sounders FC players called into international duty". Seattle Sounders FC. 13 November 2019. Retrieved 14 November 2019.
  23. "K. Leerdam". Soccerway. Retrieved 1 July 2017.
  24. "Seattle Sounders are 2019 MLS Cup champions: Rave Green win second MLS title". Major League Soccer. 10 November 2019. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
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