I’m not going to lie, writing this story feels a bit weird. It was only a few days ago that I wrote about how I wasn’t really buying the Fredy Montero-to-Sounders rumors. But I find myself revisiting this after Montero himself Tweeted out a photo of he and his family hanging out at the Seattle Roastery with a not-so-subtle message:
Wow ... I really love this city— Fredy Montero (@_fredymontero) January 24, 2017
Feeling blessed around family and friends pic.twitter.com/pfdcIwChJe
Montero has also, apparently, been spotted at the Marysville outlet mall and was playing with Steve Zakuani in a pickup soccer game a few weeks ago. There’s no question as to his whereabouts at this point. This should not be surprising, though. As we’ve previously stated, Montero owns a home in Bellevue and his in-laws live in Gig Harbor. His parents are also believed to live in the area, remaining here after he went abroad.
He’s doing this while his Chinese Super League team, Tianjin Teda, is well into their preseason, having played four games already. Chances are high that he’s on the outs with his team and looking for a move.
This has all served to fuel speculation that a return to the Sounders is imminent. But the factors that made me skeptical to start have only been reinforced in recent days.
Putting aside the reality that Montero will need to go through the Allocation Order if he signs with MLS and that the Sounders currently sit 20th on that list (as Atlanta United has effectively used its spot on Brad Guzan), Clint Dempsey being officially cleared to train makes the prospects of adding another withdrawn forward/No. 10-type highly unlikely.
Trust me, I’d love to see Montero return as much as anyone. I just don’t see it happening right now.