The Full 90

Sporting Kansas City picks up Bobby Convey

The offseason renovation of Sporting Kansas City's midfield continues.

The club continued an active month Friday, as it acquired former U.S. Men's National Team midfielder Bobby Convey from the San Jose Earthquakes for an international roster spot.

The 28-year old Convey – who participated in the 2006 World Cup – was named a MLS all-star for Earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. Sporting coach Peter Vermes sees Convey as an attacking player – although he can play anywhere on the left flank – and he is known for his service. Convey has accumulated 11 goals and 30 assists in 164 Major League Soccer appearances.

“He’s definitely a competitor,” said Sporting coach Peter Vermes. “Just look at his resume.”

Convey’s resume is impressive. The Philadelphia native joined D.C. United in 2000 at the age of 16, went on to make 72 appearances before the age of 21 and eventually moved on to England, where he spent 2004 to 2009 with Reading F.C. of the Football League Championship.

Despite all this, San Jose was willing to part with Convey – who played for the Earthquakes from 2009 to 2011 – for an international roster spot through 2012.

It’s safe to assume that Convey’s huge salary, spotty injury history and strained relationship with San Jose manager Frank Yallop played a role in the trade. But none of that bothers Vermes, who welcomes “strong” personalities and often credits his training and medical staff for helping oft-injured players like Chance Myers and Júlio César enjoy breakout 2011 seasons.

“I believe that strong personalities get you through tough times,” Vermes said. “Weak personalities, they don’t bend, they break.”It also appears Sporting is getting Convey at a good value. According to numbers provided by Major League Soccer’s players union, Convey made a little over $300,000 last season – an expensive number for any non-designated player – but both sides were able to agree to a four-year contract extension that is believed to include a 2012 cap number that is significantly less than what he made last year.

The move comes on the heels of recent trades that sent longtime midfielder Davy Arnaud to Montreal and brought holding midfielder Paulo Nagamura to Kansas City.

“I am very excited to link up with my new club and teammates,” Convey said in a statement. “The fans in Kansas City are extremely supportive of the team and create a great atmosphere in the new stadium. The team proved last year they are a good team that can win a bunch of games and I hope I can add to that success.”