MLS Moves: Sounders use TAM to sign Spanish winger

The second coming of Alvaro Fernandezto Seattle didn’t turn out very well, and six weeks after his contract expired the Sounders have signed a replacement.
Spanish winger Víctor Rodríguez, 28, comes to MLS from Sporting Gijon, one of many clubs he’s played for in his native country since starting his pro career with CF Baladona. He is a product of the Barcelona academy and during four seasons with clubs in La Liga scored 10 goals and notched 16 assists in 127 appearances (according to transfermrkt.co.uk).

In a team statement, head coach Brian Schmetzer said, “From a coaching perspective, adding a player of Victor's quality only helps to improve our team at a critical juncture in our season. We are excited to get him into training quickly and onboard him with his new teammates. We have some important games on the horizon, and Victor's abilities and experience are welcome assets for our club."

Rodríguez is the second player signed this summer by Seattle using Targeted Allocation Money (TAM). Right back Kelvin Leerdam has played three games, scoring a goal and registering an assist, in three games since debuting in MLS July 19. He played nine seasons with Feyenoord and Vitesse prior to his MLS arrival.

“Victor is an experienced and versatile attacking player that we are pleased to welcome to Seattle,” said general manager Garth Lagerwey. “Adding another quality TAM-level player to our roster as we approach the final third of our season bolsters our team, giving our club another talented offensive option. We're excited to see Victor's contributions on the field for us in the coming weeks.”

Technical director Chris Henderson scouted Rodríguez in Spain – where he played mainly in the middle but also on both flanks -- and provided this information:

"Victor is a player we've been following for some time, and his playing experience throughout Spanish football and his attacking versatility are attributes that drew us to him,” said Henderson, who during his playing career who accrued 79 U.S. caps playing mostly as a wide midfielder. “Having seen him play in person on a number of occasions, I'm excited for the quality that he'll bring to the field in Seattle, and I'm confident that his style will gel with our current squad.”

Rodriguez will be added to the Seattle roster upon receipt of his International Transfer Certificate (ITC) and issuance of a P-1 work visa. The Sounders play expansion club Minnesota United for the first time on Saturday.

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