However, simply signing in Seattle wasn't as simple as that. Because he's a returning US International, Hahnemann would go through the allocation process - the same mechanism that brought Kasey Keller to the Sounders back in 2008. As Sounders FC head coach Sigi Schmid explained, that made bringing Hahnemann to Seattle much more difficult.
"The difficulty when you go through an allocation to get a goalkeeper when you’re not number one on the allocation list is that it makes it really difficult to get a goalkeeper like Marcus Hahnemann coming back because it’s going to involve trades and allocation money and all kinds of other stuff," Schmid said. "We couldn’t afford to get ourselves into that situation."
The example Schmid gave was that of Troy Perkins, who came back to MLS with the intention of playing for DC United. The Philadelphi Union held the top allocation spot though and wound up getting a first-round draft pick, a starting midfielder in Fred and allocation money in exchange for Perkins.
That's not to say that the Sounders prefered Hahnemann to Michael Gspurning, who they signed this week, but just pointing out that the mechanism to acquire Gspurning - through the discovery process - was much more cost effective to the Sounders.