Fears that Alejandro Bedoya could head home to Inter Miami were allayed on Friday with the announcement of a contract extension that will keep the Philadelphia Union captain with the club for at least two more seasons.
Bedoya’s contract was extended through 2021 with an option for the 2022 season, meaning he could end up still playing for the club when he turns 35 in April 2022.
“Ale has exceeded expectations we set for him as a leader on the pitch, in the locker room, and throughout the community,” Ernst Tanner, Philadelphia Union Sporting Director, said in a news release. “At the Union, passion and drive are qualities that we look for, and nobody represents that better than Alejandro. It was very important for us to ensure the captain that led us to our first playoff win remains at our club to push us forward and set an example for our young core.”
The 32-year-old joined the Union in August 2016 and was named the team’s captain in 2017. He made his debut with the USMNT in 2010 and has earned 66 caps playing for his country. Though he was born in Englewood, N.J., Bedoya grew up in South Florida so speculation that he’d end up at Inter Miami makes sense.
Head coach Jim Curtin talked about his captain in a press conference on Wednesday.
“He’s the heart and soul of the team, he’s the captain, he’s the leader,” Curtin said. “In pro sports, some guys take that pressure and shrink, others take it and rise to the occasion. And Ale’s a guy who certainly really rose to the occasion last season for us in a big way, led a very young group did a lot of his talking on the field, which is, for me the best way to do it and lead by example. There’s a big reason we had so much success last year. So you know, I expect more of the same, you know, Ale’s a pretty consistent player and does it year after year.”
If he wasn’t already a solid candidate for the team’s Ring of Honor, Bedoya staying another two-three seasons should all but guarantee his future addition as a permanent fixture in Subaru Park.