Socceroos defender heads to MLS to revive career
BRAD Smith's nightmare spell with Bournemouth is over with the Socceroos left-back signing on a season-long loan with US Major League Soccer side Seattle Sounders.
Smith made just five Premier League appearances since the joining the Cherries from Liverpool in 2016 and that lack of game time resulted in him being overlooked for the World Cup squad by Bert van Marwijk.
A regular under former Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou, Smith struggled to recover from a hip injury last year and after falling further down the pecking order at the Vitality Stadium he will try to kick-start his career in Seattle.
The move will also see him link up with former Central Coast Mariners skipper John Hutchinson. The A-League champion is on the coaching staff at the Sounders, who are five points outside the play-off places in the MLS' Western Conference with 12 matches to play.
"I am delighted to be here," Smith said.
"The move happened quite quickly but once I heard a massive club like Seattle were interested I couldn't wait to come out here.
"I spoke to John Hutchison about the place, and I Facetimed the head coach (Brian Schmetzer) and agreed to come over."
Sounders general manager and president of soccer Garth Lagerwey is confident Smith will be a huge asset to his team and believes he was unlucky not to appear more for Bournemouth.
"We wanted to add some speed and power to our team and Brad has got that," Lagerwey said.
"Brad is a guy that can play left-wing or left-back and comfortable in both positions and that is something we didn't have.
"We felt he was a player that played well when he got a chance at Bournemouth and I think his personality is something that is really going to add to the group."
Smith will make his debut this weekend against FC Dallas at CenturyLink Field.