There might not have been a player who offered more bang for the buck in 2021 than Fredy Montero. After joining the Sounders on a veteran minimum contract, the 34-year-old proceeded to post a 7-goal, 6-assist season that put him among the team leaders in both categories while also extending on his team-record 68 all-competitions goals. It’s little surprise that he’ll be back on a similarly team-friendly deal in 2022, the team announced on Friday. Like last year’s contract, this one includes a team option for 2023.
“Fredy has been a very important member of our organization for a long time,” Sounders Head Coach Brian Schmetzer said in a team statement. “We’re excited that he’ll continue his illustrious career in Seattle, and he gives us another reliable, veteran piece in the attack.”
When Montero returned to the Sounders last season, he made it clear that he considered it a homecoming of sorts. Montero had made a name for himself as an up-and-coming star in his first stint with the Sounders from 2009-12, but was returning as a world-traveled veteran after playing in Colombia, Portugal, China and Canada.
Montero returned to the Sounders with his skills mostly intact. He scored a beautiful goal in his 2021 debut, scored three more goals against the Portland Timbers and generally looked perfectly capable of playing at least another year at a high level. He ranked in the 83rd percentile for non-penalty goals among attacking midfielders, the 97th percentile in progressive passes among forwards and the 94th percentile in tackles among forwards.
Montero’s signing brings the Sounders’ first-team roster to 28 players, easily the biggest it has been this early in the preseason.