Seattle Sounders legend Ozzie Alonso signs with Minnesota United

Seattle Sounders legend Ozzie Alonso signed a contract with Minnesota United on Wednesday after entering free agency this past offseason. Alonso, 33, had spent his first 10 MLS seasons with Seattle. He ranks first in club history in games played, games started and minutes, and was the last remaining player from the franchise’s inaugural MLS season in 2009.

“We have seen many great players that have played for our club, but none have had as much influence as Osvaldo Alonso," Head Coach Brian Schmetzer said. "His drive and determination to win was evident from the first day of training, his first game and continued throughout all of the successful years he had with Sounders FC. I feel fortunate to have been able to coach such a tremendous player. We watched his game evolve, his influence grow to where he eventually led us as captain to our first MLS Cup. I want to personally thank him for his play for the last 10 years. We will miss ‘El Corazon.’”

Alonso will return to CenturyLink Field when Minnesota comes to Seattle on Decision Day on Oct. 6. The Cuba native has long been heralded as one of the top defensive midfielders in MLS history, earning four MLS All-Star selections and being named Team MVP five times. He has won four Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championships, the 2014 Supporters’ Shield and captained the 2016 team that won MLS Cup.

With Alonso no longer on the squad, Cristian Roldan will likely return to defensive midfield alongside Gustav Svensson for the 2019 season.