The final two months of the Seattle Sounders' season, a nosedive that ended with a thud of a playoff elimination against Portland, virtually guaranteed that there would be something of an offseason roster cull.
"Mauro has been an important part of our organization, both on and off the field, for the past three years," owner and GM Adrian Hanauer said in a statement. "It will be difficult to see him leave, but our salary-cap situation made this decision necessary. We wish Mauro the very best at Chivas."
Rosales, 32, who was the MLS Newcomer of the Year in 2011, tallied 12 goals and 34 assists in nearly three years in Rave Green. The former Argentine international and 2004 Olympics hero led Seattle in assists in each of his three seasons, but was hampered by injuries in 2013 and saw his production drop. After recording 13 helpers in both 2011 and '12, he tallied just eight this past campaign.
Now, he'll be plying his trade with a Chivas USA team in the midst of yet another rebuild of their own. The Goats went 6-20-8 in 2013, scoring just 30 goals (tied for second-to-last in the league), and missed the playoffs for the fourth straight season. They've finished bottom of the Western Conference three of those four years.
Rosales, a Designated Player in 2012 and '13, had previously had his option declined by Seattle, and was set to be a part of Thursday's Re-Entry Stage 1 draft. He tweeted earlier on Wednesday that he was leaving the Sounders:
Sad to announce that I'm leaving @SoundersFC Thanks a lot for everything!! Sounders fans you will be always in my heart , love you guys!— Mau Rosales (@mdr7) December 11, 2013
Bowen, who turns 23 at the end of January, was the first Homegrown player in league history when he signed with the LA Galaxy back in 2008. A forward and wide midfielder, he has spent his entire career with the Galaxy and Chivas USA, along with a series of loans both in the US and Europe. He has four goals and six assists in 48 career MLS games.
Bowen is currently out of contract:
Sounders confirm they've traded for Bowen's rights. He still needs to be signed.— Jeremiah Oshan (@JeremiahOshan) December 11, 2013
The teams also swapped spots in the Allocation Ranking. The Sounders now hold the No. 2 spot in the order, while Chivas slide down to No. 13.