USA Major League Soccer Team Signs Kenyan Defender


Defender Lawrence Olum, a native of Kenya who has been playing in the U.S. lower divisions, is the latest addition to the Sporting Kansas City roster.

The team announced Thursday it had signed Olum, 27, following a brief trial period. He will be eligible to play once his International Transfer Certificate is received. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Olum recently finished a season playing for Orlando City SC of USL PRO, for which he made 21 appearances and scored its first goal in the championship game earlier this month. Olum played the full 120 minutes as Orlando SC defeated Harrisburg, 3-2, on penalty kicks following a 2-2 tie.

“He’s a versatile guy, and we’re looking for help in a couple different positions,” Sporting Kansas City coach Peter Vermes said of Olum (6-foot-2, 185 pounds). “We feel that at this time in the year, we’re delighted to bring in a guy who’s just had a very good season.”

Olum moved to the United States as a teenager, and after playing four collegiate seasons at NAIA Missouri Baptist University, began his pro career in 2008 with Portland, then in the USL. After two seasons he joined Austin Aztex of the USSF D2 Pro League, and then signed on with Orlando SC.

Thursday is the MLS roster freeze date, after which changes cannot be made to a team’s roster except in emergency circumstances. On Wednesday Philadelphia announced the signing of defender Joe Tait, who played this past season for Dayton in USL PRO.


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