The Portland Timbers acquired some much-needed help at center back on Friday, landing veteran defender/midfielder Lawrence Olum from Sporting Kansas City in exchange for $50,000 in General Allocation Money and Portland’s 2018 first-round SuperDraft pick.
Olum, 32, spent five seasons with SKC in two different stints with the club, recording five goals and four assists in 105 appearances across all competitions. He first played with the club from 2011-14, then spent 2015 with Malaysian side Kedah FC before returning to Kansas City last year. He recorded two goals and one assist in 19 MLS appearances last year.
“Lawrence will give our club another MLS experienced player at defensive mid and central defender. He will also increase our size in the squad, which is important in this league,” Timbers head coach Caleb Porter said in a statement released by the club. “We look forward to his contributions, as I know he’s eager to be back in Portland playing in front of the Timbers Army again."
The Kenyan international spent two seasons in Portland during the club’s USL years, tallying six goals in 44 games in 2007 and 2008. He joins the Timbers the same week that the club lost center back Gbenga Arokoyo for the season due to a ruptured Achilles.
"Lawrence has been a part of some great games, teams and trophies during his time with the club," Sporting KC manager Peter Vermes said in a statement released by the club. "We appreciate his service in Kansas City and wish him well in Portland."
MLS FANTASY PRICE:
Lawrence Olum – Midfielder – $6.5
SIMILAR TO: Juan David Cabezas, Sam Cronin, Servando Carrasco