Sounders FC traded winger Marco Pappa to the Colorado Rapids for allocation money on Tuesday, the club’s second offseason deal in eight days and further indication that Seattle’s midfield will have a different look in 2016.
The deal ends a two-year stint in Seattle for Pappa, the 28 year-old Guatemalan international who scored nine goals over 49 regular-season appearances and added two assists in six postseason games. Per MLS and club policy, additional terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
The Sounders opted not to exercise Pappa’s contract earlier this month. Sounders GM and President of Soccer Garth Lagerwey said after that decision that while he admired Pappa’s contributions to the club each of the last two seasons, the financial implications of his contract next season were too much for the club to bear.
“I think he’s been a good player for us,” Lagerwey told SoundersFC.com last week. “Unfortunately his cap number was significantly higher for next year, and we have to get value for every player. Every player has a number at which they are valuable and a number at which we feel it exceeds their value. With Marco, he’s a good player, we had a decent offer, so we moved him. We felt like that was for the good of the group.”
Pappa joined the club via the MLS Allocation process ahead of the 2014 season after 15 months with Dutch side SC Heerenveen. He also spent five seasons with the Chicago Fire from 2008-12, where he scored a career-high eight goals in 2011.
Pappa scored six goals and added five assists for the Sounders in 2014, and scored the game-winning goal in the team’s Supporters’ Shield-clinching win over the LA Galaxy in the season finale.
His numbers dropped in 2015, however, when he posted MLS career-lows in games played (20) and goals (3). Pappa was arrested in July for driving under the influence and speeding, and subsequently missed more than a month of action during an assessment by Major League Soccer’s Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health Program doctors.
Pappa’s trade comes a week after the Sounders dealt midfielder and Federal Way native Lamar Neagle D.C. United in exchange for allocation money. Another midfielder, Ugandan international Micheal Azira, was picked up by Colorado in the MLS Waiver Draft last week after the Sounders opted not to pick up the option on his contract.