Inter Miami Sign Kelvin Leerdam: Former Seattle Sounders, Kelvin Leerdam, has signed a three-year contract with Inter Miami FC. This contract will place him with Inter Miami until the end of the 2023 season. This was all because the Seattle Sounders decided to decline Leerdam’s contract option at the end of the 2020 season.
Inter Miami acquired his right of first refusal from the Sounders for $50,000 of general allocation money in 2021 and $25,000 of allocation money in 2022. So all together Inter Miami paid the Seattle Sounders $75,000 to acquire Kelvin Leerdam.
The Sounders General Manager & President of Soccer Garth Lager made a team statement explaining; “We’d like to thank Kelvin for four memorable seasons in Seattle. His quality of play, in addition to his tactical acumen and professionalism off the field were key to our success over the last few years. We wish him the best of luck in the next chapter of his career down in Miami.”
Leerdam joined the Seattle Sounders halfway through the 2017 season and quickly established himself as one of the league’s top right-backs. Over the four seasons with the Sounders, Leerdam made 84 starts in 91 regular-season appearances.
Leerdam also scored 9 goals and 12 assists in regular-season play. Leerdam also scored the opening goal of the Seattle Sounders MLS Cup victory in 2019.
Before arriving in MLS with Seattle, Leerdam spent the first nine seasons of his professional career playing for Feyenoord and SBV Vitesse in the Eredivisie, the first division in the Netherlands.
He began his career at Feyenoord, where he came through the youth ranks before making his professional debut in Nov. 2008. He made over 100 appearances over the course of five seasons with the team, registering four goals and 10 assists.
Following his tenure at Feyenoord, Leerdam joined SBV Vitesse, making his debut in Aug. 2013. He went on to feature for the team for four seasons, making over 100 appearances, scoring 13 goals, and tallying nine assists.
He also helped the team win the 2017 KNVB Cup, the domestic cup competition in the Netherlands. He started in five of the six matches in that tournament en route to the title, including the final.
When Leerdam was told to describe himself, he explained that he is an attacking player who likes to score goals even as a defender. Leerdam also explained “I like to attack.
That’s what I play football for. Although I’ve played a big part of my career on defense and in midfield, the joy of scoring a goal is what makes me want to play football.”
Leerdam’s playing style fits what Inter Miami coach Phil Neville wants from his full-backs. Inter Miami left-back Patrick Seagrist explains, “Phil asks us as outside backs to get high and wide as much as possible but making sure we’re waiting in the right situations when to go forward and when to make those forward passes.
A key emphasis is being patient and when it’s not on, being able to change the point of attack as quickly and efficiently as possible.”
Leerdam will likely slot in as Inter Miami’s starting right back. Nico Figal, who started at right-back multiple times last season, will presumably start at his natural position of center back alongside Leandro González Pirez. Dylan Nealis is another right-back option.
Leerdam is the second former Sounder to join Inter Miami since Chris Henderson took over as Sporting Director.
Henderson said in a statement “Kelvin is a dynamic, attacking full-back with a lot of winning experience in this league. He is a great addition to our roster and we are looking forward to integrating him to the team following his national team duties.”
Before Leerdam can join Inter Miami and start practicing with them, the defender is currently on international duty ahead of Suriname’s 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier set for March 27 at 8 p.m. ET against Aruba.