SALT LAKE CITY -- Real Salt Lake general manager Steve Pastorino and head coach John Ellinger continue to bolster its roster for the 2006 season with the announcement today that the team has acquired U.S. men's national team member and eight-year MLS veteran midfielder Chris Klein and a youth international roster spot from the Kansas City Wizards in exchange for a portion of an allocation.
"He is a great addition to our team and I think he is the prototype right midfielder that every team wants to have," Ellinger said. "Chris provides leadership, experience, great pace and work rate to the team. I can't say enough about getting a player of Chris' caliber."
Klein has played in 200 regular season matches, including 183 starts, scoring 39 goals and adding 45 assists. He was selected by Kansas City with the 4th overall pick in the 1998 college draft. The 30-year-old also tallied three goals and four assist in the post-season.
The 30-year-old completed his eighth MLS season playing in 31 games, all starts, tallying seven goals and nine assists for the Wizards. He was named the 2005 MLS Comeback Player of the Year.
The St. Louis, Mo. native has established himself as one of MLS' most dangerous midfielders during his career with the Wizards. He has 17 caps with the U.S. men's national team and is currently in camp in the player pool competing for a spot on the roster that will compete in the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany.
"Chris completes this team for the upcoming 2006 season," Pastorino said. "He's one of the most talented, aggressive outside midfielders Major League Soccer has produced. Acquiring Chris is the exclamation point to a busy and productive off-season."