UPDATE: The Sounders made Brad Smith’s re-signing official about 45 minutes after the tweet.
It sure looks like the Seattle Sounders are teasing the imminent return of Brad Smith with a recent tweet. (Hint: You’ll want to turn on the sound.)
For those of you not steeped in 1980s rock songs, that’s “Down Under” by the Australian band Men at Work. Combined with the words “Welcome Back, champ!” this seems to point pretty directly at the imminent return of Smith, the only Australian to have won a MLS Cup with the Sounders. (I suppose it could also be a much more vague allusion to Andy Rose, who was born in Australia and did win some trophies here. But that feels like a much bigger stretch since he’s not actually Australian nor did he ever win a MLS Cup.)
Aside from the tweet, it also helps that Smith is actually available after he parted ways with Bournemouth about a month ago. At the time, a reunion seemed unlikely as Smith was coming out of a contract that paid him more than $1 million a year and would have needed to accept a significant pay cut to play here again.
While this is all obviously speculation, maybe the market for his services weren’t quite what he anticipated and is now willing to accept something the Sounders can more readily fit into their salary cap.
It does, however, set up a logjam of sorts that the Sounders seemed interested in freeing up last year as Smith would still be competing with two other starting caliber left backs. With the MLS transfer window remaining open for a couple more weeks, perhaps this is just one of several upcoming moves.