Press Release

Sounders FC Drafts Three Players in 2024 SuperDraft Presented by Adidas

SEATTLE, WASH. – Sounders FC today selected three players in the 2024 MLS SuperDraft presented by adidas, adding midfielder Kalani Kossa-Rienzi from Washington in the first round (23rd overall), defender Antino Lopez from Duke in the second round (52nd overall) and forward Buba Fofanah from the University of Portland in the third round (81st overall). All three players are currently unsigned to the First Team.

“We are excited to have selected Kalani, Antino and Buba in this year’s SuperDraft,” said General Manager & Chief Soccer Officer Craig Waibel. “All three players impressed us with their collegiate play, and we look forward to seeing what they can provide to our club in the future.”

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Kossa-Rienzi, 21, appeared in 76 matches (68 starts) over four seasons at Washington, scoring six goals while adding 11 assists. After recording an assist in his first game against Northwestern University, the Berkely, California native scored two goals and added three assists during his sophomore year. The midfielder was named to the Pac-12 All-Conference First Team as a junior and senior, in addition to a United Soccer Coaches All-Far West Region Second Team selection following his junior year. Kossa-Rienzi also helped the Huskies to a second-place Pac-12 finish and run to the NCAA National Championship game as a sophomore, followed by a first-place conference finish as a junior before advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Kossa-Rienzi most recently tallied one goal and two assists during his senior year in 2023.

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Lopez, 21, appeared in 66 matches (65 starts) over four seasons at Duke, tallying three goals and three assists. The defender started all 16 matches as a freshman in 2020 and was selected to the All-ACC Freshman Team. After recording an assist in Duke’s ACC quarterfinal win over Wake Forest as a sophomore in 2021, the Las Vegas native was named to the All-ACC Third Team as a junior in 2022, as Duke finished first in the ACC Coastal Division. As a senior in 2023, Lopez scored two goals and added one assist and was once again named to the All-ACC Third Team. A former Sounders Academy product, Lopez appeared in nine matches during the 2019-2020 Academy season.

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Fofanah, 22, appeared in 54 matches (30 starts) for Portland from 2020-2023, recording 16 goals and 11 assists. The forward was an All-West Coast Conference Honorable Mention as a freshman and made the All-WCC Freshman Team after scoring four goals and adding two assists in 2020. Fofanah scored an additional three goals from 2021-2022 before scoring nine goals in 2023, including a brace against UC Santa Barbara on September 1. His performance in 2023 earned him All-WCC Second Team honors as Portland finished third in the WCC.

The club is currently in the midst of its offseason after finishing the 2023 regular season second in the Western Conference with 53 points (14-9-11), advancing to the Western Conference Semifinals before falling 1-0 to LAFC.

TRANSACTION: Seattle selects Washington midfielder Kalani Kossa-Rienzi with the 23th overall pick in the first round, Duke defender Antino Lopez with the 52nd overall pick in the second round and University of Portland forward Bubah Fofanah with the 81st overall pick in the third round of the 2024 MLS SuperDraft (all currently unsigned to the First Team roster).

Full Name: Kalani Kossa-Rienze

Pronunciation: Kuh-LAWN-ee Koe-suh ree-EN-see

Position: Midfielder

Height: 5-7

Weight: 150

Hometown: Berkeley, California

Date of Birth: June 27, 2002, in Berkley, California

Nationality: USA

Acquired: Drafted 23rd overall in the first round of the 2024 MLS SuperDraft on December 19, 2023

Full Name: Antino Lopez

Position: Defender

Height: 6-0

Weight: 170

Hometown: Las Vegas, Nevada

Date of Birth: May 21, 2002, in Las Vegas, Nevada

Nationality: USA

Acquired: Drafted 52nd overall in the second round of the 2024 MLS SuperDraft on December 19, 2023

Full Name: Buba Fofanah

Pronunciation: Bu-bah Foe-fawn-uh

Height: 5-9

Weight: 172

Hometown: Kenema, Sierra Leone

Date of Birth: December 14, 2001 in Kenema, Sierra Leone

Nationality: Sierra Leone

Acquired: Drafted 81st overall in the third round of the 2024 MLS SuperDraft on December 19, 2023

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