Probably the most anticipated player signing in Seattle Sounders FC 2's short history was finalized on Friday when Pablo Rossi officially joined the first-year team. The 22-year-old Argentinian midfielder came to the Sounders as a relatively unknown prospect, having never made a senior team appearance with Atletico de Rafaela. But he quickly made an impression, scoring three goals and logging a couple assists in preseason.
Among Rossi's goals were two from long-distance free kicks and a another from 30 yards off an indirect free kick.
"I think Pablo is one of the more talented and technical players we have seen throughout preseason and we are very happy to have him join S2," S2 Head Coach Ezra Hendrickson said in a team release. "He has the technical ability to play at this level, and be possesses great vision and an incredible shot. You need guys with those types of qualities on the pitch. He brings the flair we need."
The one major concern over Rossi is his size. Although he's listed at 6 feet and 155 pounds, both seem a bit generous. He was easily knocked to the ground in preseason games and didn't show much interest in defending.
But playing in the hole behind a loan striker, Rossi's skills were impossible to miss and his upside was clearly intriguing.
"I think this is a great club and I see this as a very important step for my career," Rossi said in the release. "We are all trying to earn something out there, and we are trying to do the right things. I would like to score goals which is what every player wants. We are getting better day-by-day and as the weeks go by we are going to improve and do well as a team this season."
Rossi's signing brings S2's roster to eight one day ahead of their season opener against Sacramento Republic. In addition to earlier signings Duncan McCormick, Amadou Sanyang, Aaron Long, Sam Garza, Andy Craven, Nick MIele and Qudus Lawal, their roster will be bolstered by players loaned down from Sounders FC.