It's official: Sounders complete Montero loan to Millonarios

Weeks ago, rumors, reports, and a thousand tweets broke the news that Seattle Sounders star Fredy Montero was going on loan to Colombian side Millonarios in an effort to improve his chances of representing Colombia during this year's World Cup qualification round.

On Monday, the club made it official, announcing that Montero, 25, will spend the 2013 season with the Bogata-based Millonarios.

"Fredy has been a fantastic player and pro for Sounders FC over our first four years," said Adrian Hanauer, Sounders owner and general manager, in a statement released by the club. "We wish Fredy the best of success with Millonarios as he continues to develop as a player. We hope this move helps Fredy's chances of being called up to the Colombian national team, as he has certainly earned it."

There was also an extra bit of news in the announcement: Montero has signed a new multi-year contract with the Sounders. Terms were not released.

Montero's move away from CenturyLink Field opens up a Designated Player spot on the Seattle roster.

Montero, 25, leaves the Seattle as the club's all-time leading scorer with 47 goals in league play. All told, he has 60 goals and 43 assists across all competitions. He was a three-time MLS All-Star and 2009 MLS Newcomer of the Year.

Millionarios, one of the most successful clubs in Colombian history, are the defending Liga Postobon champions after they won their 14th title during last year's Clausura tournament. As champions, they earned a spot in the 2013 Copa Libertadores, where they are placed in Group 4 with Corinthians (Brazil), San Jose (Bolivia), and Tijuana (Mexico). They will open their campaign on February 19 at home to Tijuana, who boast American internationals Edgar Castillo and Joe Corona.