Sounders sign former Mexican international to bolster midfield

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Gonzalo Pineda has been training with the Sounders for about a month and most recently played for Queretaro in 2012-13.

The Seattle Sounders moved one step closer to finalizing their roster, signing former Mexican international and Liga MX veteran Gonzalo Pineda on Wednesday. The 31-year-old midfielder has been training with the Sounders for about a month and has featured in three preseason games.

"He is a cerebral player with good technique and vision," Sounders Sporting Director Chris Henderson said in a team release. "Gonzo reads the game very quickly and is always thinking ahead of the play."

Pineda has made more than 200 appearances in Liga MX during a professional career that started in 2002, with 32 more appearances for the Mexican national team. Pineda also started three times for Mexico in the 2006 World Cup.

He is mostly classified as a more defensive-minded central midfielder, likely spelling Osvaldo Alonso or perhaps playing alongside him in more of a double-pivot.

"Gonzalo is an experienced player who can control a game in midfield," said Head Coach Sigi Schmid. "His left foot and vision on the ball will help us in key situations."

Pineda's signing effectively gives the Sounders 25 players under contract. Trialists Michael Azira, Cam Weaver, John Arroyo and Kevin Parsemain as well as SuperDraft pick Fabio Pereira remain unsigned and with the team.

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