Brad Smith is back. The Seattle Sounders announced the return of the Australian on Thursday, reuniting them with their MLS Cup-winning left back.

“We are very excited to bring in Brad, a proven winner who adds even more speed and athleticism to our squad,” Sounders FC General Manager & President of Soccer Garth Lagerwey said in a team release. “With Brad being out of contract, this was a uniquely good deal for us, allowing the club to add a high impact player during this unorthodox season.”

When Smith’s loan with the Sounders ran out at the end of last year — and even as recently as August — a reunion did not seem particularly likely. In addition to have another six months remaining on his contract that paid him more than $1 million a year, it seemed a reasonable bet that he’d find interested longterm buyers in England who could more easily offer that kind of money.