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Originally published Wednesday, August 13, 2008 at 12:00 AM

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Kasey Keller will join Sounders FC

Veteran goalkeeper Kasey Keller will sign with Sounders FC. The team has scheduled a news conference for Thursday to announce the deal.

Seattle Times staff reporter

Seattle Sounders FC will sign veteran goalkeeper Kasey Keller as the second member of the new Major League Soccer franchise's roster.

The team has scheduled a news conference for Thursday afternoon at Qwest Field to announce the signing of Keller, a native of Lacey.

MLS handles player contracts on behalf of its clubs, so Keller was signed by the league and will be allocated to Sounders FC, which opens play next spring.

Sounders FC, according to MLS sources, has the right to the league's No. 1 player allocation as an expansion team. It's believed that Keller was signed as an allocated player, so the team can still acquire a foreign player and make him their designated player whose salary can exceed the team's salary cap.

Keller, 38, most recently played for Fulham in the English Premier League. He has spent the past 18 seasons playing professionally in England, Spain and Germany, and is one of only two American players to have appeared in four World Cups. Keller has 102 caps, or international match appearances, and is the U.S. national team's all-time leader in that category plus World Cup qualifying shutouts and overall wins.

Keller played high school soccer at North Thurston and went on to the University of Portland. He will join forward Sebastien Le Toux, currently with the United Soccer Leagues First Division Sounders, as the first two players for Sounders FC.

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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