Defender/midfielder Luke Sassano

Luke Sassano Signs with Sporting

Sporting Kansas City confirmed Wednesday night that Luke Sassano has signed with the club for the 2011 season. Sassano's signing comes on the eve of the annual MLS SuperDraft, which will take place Thursday from Baltimore and air live on ESPN2 and The draft kicks off at 11 a.m. CT. Sporting Kansas City holds the 10th selection in the first round and three selections overall in the three-round event.

Kansas City will look to turn in another solid draft, after taking talented USA striker Teal Bunbury with the fourth overall selection in 2010.

Sassano, a 25-year-old defender/midfielder, was taken by the Los Angeles Galaxy in the first round of December’s Stage 2 Re-Entry Draft after having his option declined by New York, where he played the last three seasons. Sporting Kansas City subsequently acquired the rights to Sassano from the Galaxy in exchange for the rights to Frankie Hejduk, Kansas City’s lone selection in the Stage 2 Re-Entry draft.

Sassano, drafted by the Red Bulls in the third round of the 2008 MLS SuperDraft, played in 42 games, including postseason, for New York over the past three years. He made 22 appearances in his rookie season, including starts in all four postseason matches as the Red Bulls reached their first ever MLS Cup in 2008. He then played in 17 games in 2009 and three games last year before suffering a season-ending ankle injury mid-season.