The pipeline from the Peru national team to the Seattle Sounders appears to be open. Just how much talent will end up traveling through remains to be seen, but yet another Peruvian has been linked to the Sounders. The latest is left back Miguel Trauco, a 26-year-old who has 30 international caps — including three starts in the 2018 World Cup — but who has recently fallen out of favor with Brazilian club Flamengo.
Coming off a season in which Trauco lost his starting spot, the Sounders likely see a talented player who may be a bit more affordable due to circumstance. His highlight reel suggests that he’s a left back keen to join the attack and with the kind of talent that could easily play farther up the field.
His stats suggest as much, too. In fewer than 400 first-team minutes, Trauco still managed to pick up four assists and register a rather eye-popping 1.7 key passes per 90 minutes. A year earlier as a regular starter, he averaged 0.8 key passes per 90. To put that into perspective, Edgar Castillo led MLS fullbacks with 1.4 key passes per 90 in 2018, and Kelvin Leerdam was the Sounders’ most dangerous passer among defensive players, with 0.7 key passes per 90. Joevin Jones averaged about 1.1 key passes per 90 during his time with the Sounders.
The biggest stumbling block could be money, though.
Transfermarkt estimates his value at somewhere close to $2 million, which would certainly be expensive, but is also virtually unchanged from 2017 when he was a regular starter. Chances are, Flamengo would be willing to let him leave for less, which could bring him into TAM territory.
All of this suggests the Sounders might not be entirely settled at left back, despite currently having three players under contract. The biggest domino would be Brad Smith, who can be recalled by Bournemouth next month. If Smith were to leave, Trauco suddenly becomes much more attractive and could potentially work in tandem or as a sort of platoon with Nouhou.