Nicolás Lodeiro: 2023 is my final season with Seattle Sounders

Nico Lodeiro - Seattle Sounders

Nicolas Lodeiro’s legendary Seattle Sounders FC career appears to be winding down.

The Uruguayan No. 10, who’s out of contract after the 2023 MLS season, told Sounder At Heart reporter Niko Moreno he’s not received a new offer and “as I’m concerned now, I’m just not going to get one.”

Lodeiro, after Seattle’s 2-0 win at St. Louis CITY SC on Decision Day, also posted on his Instagram story that it was his final regular-season game with the club. Speaking with Moreno, the 34-year-old further relayed “sometimes clubs have to make certain decisions and we have to respect them.”

On the topic of Lodeiro’s potential return, there’s no official word from Seattle’s front office (i.e. general manager & chief soccer officer Craig Waibel) or coaching staff (i.e. manager Brain Schmetzer). The final verdict could change in the months ahead – Seattle, the Western Conference’s No. 2 seed in the Audi 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs, are hoping for a vintage postseason run starting with their Round One Best-of-3 series vs. No. 7-seed FC Dallas

But if Lodeiro’s stance holds true – that he’s not getting a new deal, even with a reduced role or pay – he’s determined to go out on top.

“I’m under contract through Dec. 31 and in every game I play up to that day, I will defend this jersey as I’ve always done,” Lodeiro said. “Fans should rest assured that my commitment and effort will be there all the way through my final match.”

Lodeiro, who’s arguably the greatest player in Sounders’ history, last signed a contract extension after the 2020 MLS season. He had initially joined the club from Argentine powerhouse Boca Juniors midway through 2016 when now-Atlanta United executive Garth Lagerwey was calling the shots, a trademark summertime signing (and arguably the most impactful of its sort in MLS history).

Lodeiro, a Designated Player and longtime captain, has since been the figurehead of Seattle’s rise. He’s won two MLS Cups (2016, ‘19) and a historic Concacaf Champions League title (2022), plus has individual accolades like being a 2019 MLS All-Star and making the 2020 MLS Best XI. In pure boxscore stats, Lodeiro has 41 goals and 80 assists in 191 regular-season games.

While there are always two sides to contract negotiations, and the clubs have to make difficult decisions, Lodeiro’s point of view is clear: “I’m quite disappointed, sad, because of everything I’ve achieved with the club.”

For Lodeiro’s full interview, check out Sounder At Heart’s story.