Fresh off their making their MLS debuts on Thursday, Obed Vargas and Alex Villanueva have both earned another short-term contract. The Tacoma Defiance teens will be available for selection in Sunday’s game against Sporting KC.
Vargas, 15, became the third-youngest player to ever appear in an MLS game when he started and played 77 minutes against Austin FC. Villanueva, 19, officially logged just 1 minute after entering for Reed Baker-Whiting in stoppage time.
After playing once, both Villanueva and Vargas are allowed to make one more MLS appearance on a short-term contract. Sam Adeniran has already exhausted his appearances. The Sounders could sign them to regular first-team contracts if they wanted to continue to use them.
This is the fourth straight match in which the Sounders have utilized the MLS extreme-hardship clause, which allows them to sign players to short-term contracts when fewer than 16 outfield players are available. The Sounders currently are missing nine regulars through injury or international call-up and three more reserve players who are on loan.
With Alex Roldan due to return to the Sounders this week and a couple more injured players nearing fitness, it’s possible this will be the final game in which the Sounders need to use hardship signings for the near future.