Seattle Sounders sign veteran South Korean center back Kim Kee-hee

The Seattle Sounders announced on Tuesday the signing of center back Kim Kee-hee. The 28-year-old South Korean international joins Seattle from China’s Shanghai Greenland Shenhua and was signed using Targeted Allocation Money (TAM). He becomes the fifth Sounders player signed with TAM, joining Román Torres, Kelvin Leerdam, Víctor Rodríguez and Magnus Wolff Eikrem.

“Kim is a strong, experienced player who we believe will be a good addition to our defense,” said Sounders FC Head Coach Brian Schmetzer. “His signing gives us very good options at center back going forward, and I’m excited to see how he integrates to the squad.”

A tall, technical defender, Kim will provide another physical presence to the likes of Torres, Chad Marshall and Tony Alfaro on the back line. Kim started all 45 of his appearances with Shenhua, leading them to the 2017 Chinese FA Cup title and a spot in the AFC Champions League. He also has 23 international caps, including six during South Korea’s qualifying run to the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

“Kim is a player who has had a lot of success in the top leagues in Asia, and it’s always good to add players with winning pedigrees and experience in top competitions,” said Sounders FC VP of Soccer & Sporting Director Chris Henderson. “On top of that, he has a very good tactical understanding of the center back position, and we look forward to seeing him help our already strong defense.”