SEATTLE — Sounders FC is expected to release defender Adam Johansson today in a move to cut salary at a position where clubs see other options.
Johansson, 30, started 27 games and made 28 appearances across all competitions last season. He signed with Seattle on Dec. 29, 2011, after playing seven seasons in Sweden’s top league and having made 15 appearances with the Swedish national team.
He seemed likely to retain his spot as regular right back, but he suffered a knee injury during preseason training in Arizona. That opened the door for rookie DeAndre Yedlin, who has started both of Seattle’s MLS games this season and appeared in both CONCACAF Champions League matches.
“It’s really a salary cap situation, primarily,” coach Sigi Schmid said. “Also with the trade for Shalrie Joseph, and we know that Brad Evans has played some at right back — that’s a consideration that we have moving forward, that Brad can go back there. It’s very important for Adam’s career for him to have regular first-team minutes because he’s on the Swedish national team.”
Johansson received $182,833 in total compensation last season, according to the Major League Soccer Players Union.
Schmid was asked if Johansson was on board with the move.
“The recognition is that it’s beneficial for him as well — especially with our thinking that once Shalrie gets into the lineup we might push Brad back there,” Schmid said. “Then it becomes a very competitive position for him back there as well. So for him to get into the World Cup team in 2014, to continue to be part of the qualifiers … if he’s not getting regular minutes, then that’s going to hurt him.”
Joseph and Evans were both limited in training Tuesday due to calf strains. That makes Yedlin or veteran Zach Scott the most likely starter Saturday when the Sounders return to MLS action at San Jose.