The Philadelphia Union and Colorado Rapids are keeping important veterans in the fold for 2016 while the Seattle Sounders are bringing in a longtime MLS vet.
The Union and Rapids announced the re-signing of Brian Carroll and Bobby Burling respectively on Wednesday, keeping senior leadership on board amid significant offseason roster overhauls. Meanwhile, the Sounders signed Michael Farfan, who trained in Seattle ahead of last season before joining D.C. United.
Holding midfielder Carroll, 34, has been with the Union since 2011 and was a member of the league's inaugural free-agency class this offseason before electing to re-sign with Philly.
“Brian’s vast knowledge and experience in this game is an invaluable asset and we’re thrilled he’s decided to return to our club,” Union sporting director Earnie Stewart said in a statement. “As Brian has consistently shown throughout his career, his professional approach to the game is unmatched, a key factor for why he can still play at such a high level. We cannot think of a better leader to mentor some of our newer players, both on and off the field, for the upcoming season.”
Meanwhile, the Rapids kept faith with Burling, their 2015 Defender of the Year. The 31-year-old center back returned to his home state of Colorado via the Waiver Draft in December 2014 and last season started all 22 Rapids matches he appeared in.
“This is an important step as we build our roster for 2016,” said Rapids technical directior Paul Bravo in a statement. “Bobby is a tremendously popular player in the group, adding leadership and experience. He was a key member of the squad last season and we are delighted to have him back.”
Meanwhile, Farfan, 27, comes to Seattle after appearing in 17 games for D.C. United last season. He made his MLS debut with the Philadelphia Union in 2011 and spent three seasons with the club before he was sold to Liga MX side Cruz Azul ahead of the 2014 Clausura.
“Michael is a technical player with good feet who I’ve followed for a while now,” Sounders GM Garth Lagerwey said in a statement. “We were interested in signing Michael last year after having him in camp, so we’re happy he was available to add to our roster now.”