A transfer at least two months in the making finally came to fruition on Wednesday when the Seattle Sounders officially announcing the signing of Nicolas Lodeiro. The 27-year-old Uruguay international most recently played for Boca Juniors, helping lead the Argentine giants to the Copa Libertadores semifinals.
Lodeiro’s insistence on remaining with Boca until they were eliminated from the Western Hemisphere’s biggest club tournament was a major part of why the signing stretched so long. The Sounders have expressed a desire to get him eligible to play in time for Sunday’s game against the LA Galaxy, but the necessary paperwork may delay his debut.
"We have doggedly pursued our top target, Nicolás Lodeiro, for the past several months and we are delighted our persistence finally paid off with his signing," Sounders GM and President of Soccer Garth Lagerwey said in a team release. "We were willing to wait for Nico because we believe in his character off the field as well as his abilities on it.
"Wherever he has played he has made his team better. We believe he can be a big piece of where we want to take the Sounders long-term."
Lodeiro brings an impressive resume to the Sounders, having played in three Copa Americas — winning one — two World Cups, four Copa Libertadores, two UEFA Champions Leagues and even Europa League.
Lodeiro’s signing culminates the largest Designated Player search in Sounders history, as scouts traversed the globe looking for the right player. They believe Lodeiro is that player.
"Lodeiro has proven himself to be an excellent player, fantastic teammate and beloved fan-favorite at every stage of his professional career," Sounders Sporting Director Chris Henderson said. "We are very excited to have him as part of our organization."