As Jake Gleeson has looked more and more comfortable in net for the Timbers, rumors have been swirling about Adam Kwarasey moving on from the club. Last month, he was headed down to Mexico, and this morning, there were rumblings that he was off to Norway.
Those rumors were quickly confirmed with Kwarasey being moved on to Norway’s Rosenborg BK as presumably their starting keeper. Rather than me blathering on, let’s go to the man in charge:
Adam Kwarasey should never need to buy a drink in PDX. We owe him so much. Very tough decision but I cannot thank him enough. #RCTID— Merritt Paulson (@MerrittPaulson) July 18, 2016
We now have some cap flex to do things we hope will help the team… now or later (needs to be right). Adam also needs to be starting/playing.— Merritt Paulson (@MerrittPaulson) July 18, 2016
This should hopefully be a win-win for everyone involved: Adam gets to continue to play in the prime of his career rather than riding pine, and the Timbers could get some much needed help on the wings, especially with Darren Mattocks being out for two months.
In her report, The Oregonian’s Jamie Goldberg puts into perspective just how much salary cap room they are saving, as well as noting they are looking to sign another keeper (so don’t order those Hamilton jerseys just yet):
By moving Kwarasey, the Timbers are freeing up a significant amount of salary cap space that they could use to sign another player this summer or in the offseason. According to the MLS Players Union, Kwarasey was Portland's sixth-highest paid player and the fourth highest-paid goalkeeper in MLS, while Gleeson is making under $100,000 a year.
The Timbers are looking to sign a more experienced goalkeeper to backup Gleeson.
As we get more information on the terms of the transfer, we’ll update the site with the pertinent details.
For you commenters out there, what will you most remember about Adam Kwarasey’s time in Portland?
Full press release:
For immediate release: July 18, 2016
TIMBERS TRANSFER GOALKEEPER ADAM KWARASEY TO NORWEGIAN CLUB ROSENBORG BK
PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers today announced the transfer of goalkeeper Adam Kwarasey to Rosenborg BK of Norway’s top-flight Tippeligaen.
“On behalf of the Timbers, I would like to sincerely thank Adam for his major contributions to the club, both on and off the field, and for his instrumental role in helping the Timbers win their first MLS Cup," said Gavin Wilkinson, general manager and president of soccer for the Timbers. "This transfer gives the Timbers flexibility to strengthen the team and is a move that makes sense for Adam, his family and the Timbers. We wish him all the best in his career.”
Born in Oslo, Norway, Kwarasey signed with Portland on Dec. 8, 2014, and made 40 regular-season league appearances over the 2015 and 2016 seasons with the Timbers. In his first season in 2015, Kwarasey, 28, appeared in 33 regular-season games and five matches during the MLS Cup Playoffs. This season, Kwarasey appeared in seven matches for the Timbers before sustaining an injury in April.
“I want to thank Adam for his contributions to the club and for helping us win our first major trophy,”said Caleb Porter, head coach of the Timbers. “I enjoyed working with him, and he was a top-class professional in his time here. We wish him nothing but the best with his new opportunity.”
Prior to joining the Timbers, Kwarasey made 154 league appearances over eight seasons with Strømsgodset of the Tippeligaen, winning a league championship with the club in 2013.
Currently atop the Tippeligaen table, Rosenborg BK has won 23 league titles, nine Norwegian Cups and is the reigning champion of the Tippeligaen. Based in Trondheim, Norway, the club has played in the UEFA Europa tournament in five consecutive seasons and advanced to the third qualifying round of the 2011-12 UEFA Champions League tournament.