Tday the Sounders announced the signing of midfielder, defender and sometimes-captain Brad Evans to a contract extension. The move came a day after club MVP Osvaldo Alonso was signed to a long-term designated player contract and follows the August signing of U.S. national team captain Clint Dempsey.
Hanauer had signaled the club’s commitment to the three players soon after the 2013 season came to a disappointing end in the Western Conference semifinals.
“Without going into detail, I think it’s highly likely that Clint, along with Ozzie, along with Brad Evans form a triumvirate of leaders on the team going forward,” Hanauer said at the time. “Along with a number of other guys on the team, we feel like we have a very good core going into the off-season.”
And with that taken care of, the off-season could be about to get very interesting.
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Here's the news release from the club:
Seattle Sounders FC has signed midfielder Brad Evans to a multi-year contract, the club announced today. Per Major League Soccer and club policy, terms were not disclosed. Evans, 28, has been a consistent starter for Sounders FC since 2009, ranking third in club history in games played (112), games started (103), goals (17), assists (19) and fourth in minutes (8,900). He is one of just four players to make over 100 appearances for Sounders FC, and has been capped 16 times by the U.S. National Team. "Re-signing Brad was a major priority for us," said Sounders FC Owner and General Manager Adrian Hanauer. "He has become a leader in the locker room and is a versatile player on the field. Brad exhibits the commitment, values and spirit of playing for the Sounders FC badge."
Evans recorded a career-high five assists in 2013, ranking second on Sounders FC, and added four goals. His 13 points were the second most in his seven-year career and he matched his career high with 37 shots. Evans scored the first half game-winner in the Knockout Round to help Seattle advance to the Western Conference Semifinals of the MLS Cup Playoffs. "My goal was to stay in Seattle and I'm very excited to continue my career here," said Evans. "It's always an honor to play for this city and these fans. I can't wait to get back to work with my teammates to prepare for the 2014 season." Evans has also become a mainstay on the U.S. National Team, making a career-high 10 appearances in 2013. He scored the latest game-winner in USMNT qualifying history when he struck in second-half stoppage time at Jamaica on June 7.
Sounders FC originally selected Evans in the 2008 MLS Expansion Draft from the Columbus Crew. In his first season with Seattle, Evans made 25 starts with three goals and two assists. Limited by injury to just 12 games in 2010, Evans returned in 2011 to start 20 games and record a career high 15 points (five goals and five assists).
Evans set career highs in 2012 with 29 starts and 2,371 minutes, adding four goals (4th on team) and four assists (3rd). He was named MLS Player of the Week for Week 33 after scoring two goals in a win over FC Dallas and playing multiple defensive positions in a scoreless draw against Real Salt Lake.
Prior to joining Sounders FC, Evans spent two seasons with Columbus, making 30 appearances. He played 26 games and scored five goals in 2008 to help the Crew win the Supporters' Shield and MLS Cup.
Evans was originally drafted by Columbus out of the University of California, Irvine in the second round (15th overall) of the 2007 MLS SuperDraft.