Gomez Andrade, 27, was acquired via transfer from Argentine club Union de Sante Fe. The club used Targeted Allocation Money to complete the transaction. He’ll officially join the roster upon receipt of his P-1 Visa and International Transfer Certificate, and will occupy an international roster slot.
“We are excited to announce the signing of Yeimar, who brings a wealth of athleticism and experience to a position of need for us,” said GM and president of soccer Garth Lagerwey in a statement. “Combined with Joao Paulo, we’ve now added a pair of key offseason pieces that puts our roster in a good spot as the season approaches.”
The addition of Gomez Andrade follows Seattle signing Brazilian midfielder Joao Paulo last week to a Designated Player deal. This is also their second South American center back signing in as many seasons, with Xavier Arreaga joining last summer from Ecuadorian club Barcelona SC.
Gomez Andrade has spent the last three seasons with Union de Sante Fe, and has spent his entire career in Argentina after moving to Rosario Central as a youth player in 2010.
“I had the chance to scout Yeimar a couple of times in Argentina for Union de Santa Fe and he had dominant performances at central defender,” said VP of soccer and sporting director Chris Henderson. “He reads the game well and is a strong one-on-one defender. He anticipates and intercepts balls in transition from defense to attack and is very fast. We are excited to see him in a Sounders FC jersey marking attacking players out of the game.”
The signing represents a major defensive addition for the Sounders, who within the last year have lost Chad Marshall to retirement and saw Roman Torres sign with Inter Miami CF. Kim Kee-hee is also unlikely to return to the club.
“We are pleased to add a strong, experienced defender to the club. Yeimar fits the profile we were looking for and we have confidence that he can make a positive impact on us,” said head coach Brian Schmetzer. “We look forward to having him join us for our preseason preparations and seeing how he fits with our squad.”