By John Boyle Herald Writer
The Sounders continued their roster overhaul Wednesday, trading midfielder Mauro Rosales to Chivas USA for forward Tristan Bowen.
The teams also swapped spots in the allocation order, with Seattle moving up from No. 13 to No. 2. The allocation order is the method used by Major League Soccer to award the rights to U.S. national team players coming to MLS from overseas.
Rosales, who spent the past three seasons with the Sounders — the last two as a designated player — likely was done in Seattle before this move, but the trade gives Seattle something in return for the 32-year-old Argentine. Earlier this week, the team declined a contract option on Rosales, and with the Sounders having already signed Osvaldo Alonso to a deal that made him the team’s third designated player, Rosales would have had to take a significant pay cut to stay in Seattle.
“Mauro has been an important part of our organization, both on and off the field, for the past three years,” Seattle general manager Adrian Hanauer said in a press release. “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.”
In his three seasons with Seattle, Rosales, who wore the captains armband for much of the past two years, played 86 games and had 34 assists, which is tied with Fredy Montero for the club record. He set a team record with 13 assists in 2011 and earned MLS Newcomer of the Year honors.
Rosales said his goodbyes earlier in the day through series of tweets, one of which read: “Once a Sounder always a Sounder!! I have no words to express my gratitude to all of you, Thanks a lot! Good bye #10.”
Bowen, 22, signed with the Los Angeles Galaxy as a home-grown player after the 2008 season, then was traded to Chivas in 2010. He appeared in a career-high 22 games last season, starting 15, and contributed two goals and two assists.
This move is just the latest of several that should have Seattle looking significantly different in 2014. Earlier this week the Sounders parted ways with starting goalkeeper Michael Gspurning, acquired Toronto goalkeeper Stefan Frei in a trade, declined an option on defender Marc Burch, and elected not to re-sign former No. 1 pick Steve Zakuani, whose contract expired after the 2013 season.