SEATTLE - JUNE 23: Erik Friberg #8 of the Seattle Sounders FC celebrates with Michael Fucito #2 after scoring a goal against the New York Red Bulls at CenturyLink Field on June 23, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Though nothing is finalized yet, it would appear as the Sounders plan to bring the 25-year-old midfielder back to Seattle for another season.
Joshua Mayers has received confirmation from Seattle Sounders GM Adrian Hanauer that the team will exercise midfielder Erik Friberg's 2012 contract option. While nothing has been finalized, the Sounders expect Friberg to return next year and another option remains on the his contract for the 2013 season. The 25-year-old Swedish midfielder signed with the Sounders on December 16th, 2010 and established himself as a member of the team's core immediately.
Friberg made 34 appearances for the Sounders in all competitions, starting 29 games and logging nearly 2,500 minutes. Though his impact on the scoresheet was minimal (1 goal and 2 assists) his composure, vision, tactical awareness and box-to-box ability were vitally important to the club's success. Friberg's tireless workrate, aggressive play in the defensive phase of the game and set-piece acumen quickly endeared him to both the coaching staff and fans alike, and his mid-season arrival on the Twitter scene made him a favorite of Sounders faithful. If Friberg's option is in fact exercised, it would serve to at least partially clarify a very muddy situation surrounding the team's plans heading into the MLS Expansion Draft on November 23rd.