Sounders Insider

Seattle Sounders FC and the Puget Sound soccer scene

Archives: May 2009


Playoffs? League gains as Sounders draw

I realize it’s still early in the season. However, ever since the Sounders’ 3-0 start the tendency has been to look ahead and wonder about the Western title or Supporters Shield or MLS Cup.

Yet, now we check the rear-view mirror and notice that objects are be closer than they appear.

The Sounders steady stream of draws has brought a 4-2-5 record and 17 points … which is now behind both Chivas and Houston in the Western standings. The Colorado Rapids (4-2-4; 16) are just one point behind.

Eight teams make the MLS playoffs — the top

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Sounders 1, Crew 1; Marshall red-carded for punch

Coach Sigi Schmid wasn’t happy after the game tonight. And he apparently expressed that to his team far longer than usual tonight, as he didn’t come into the media room for about 25 minutes after the game. About twice as long as usual.

When he arrived, he made it clear that he thought some of his players became more interested in complaining to the referee than playing the game.

“I was disappointed in terms of our team’s focus at times,” he said. “I thought we got overly concerned about the referee and weren’t concerned enough about our play. I’m a big believer that you’ve got so much energy to expend over 90 minutes and if you expend a lot of energy dealing with the referee, you’re not going to have that energy to deal with the game. And that was the thing that we just talked about."

As for that late red card on Tyrone Marshall, that was due to the referee’s assistant seeing Marshall throw a punch. And after the game, Marshall didn’t exactly deny that.

“The referee said I punched a guy, the striker,” Marshall said. “When that happens, you always see the what happened afterward, and not what happened before. He was coming in being very aggressive, I think he ran into me with his elbow, and being the competitor that I am, I’m not going to take that. … I mean punch thrown or not, I think it was one of those games that was really scrappy and things were going on, so if they want to call a red card and give me a red card and not the other guy, I don’t think that’s fair. If he’s going to give a red card, I think both persons have to get a red card.”

We know the drill by now: Marshall will miss next week’s game. And it happens to be a big one at conference-leading Chivas USA.

Here’s the game report:

Scoring Summary:
CLB — Alejandro Moreno 2 (Pat Noonan 1, Jed Zayner 1) 12
SEA — Nate Jaqua 3 (Freddie Ljungberg 2) 58

Columbus Crew — Andy Gruenebaum, Jed Zayner, Eric Brunner, Chad Marshall, Gino Padula, Emmanuel Ekpo (Steven Lenhart 80), Eddie Gaven, Danny O’Rourke (Duncan Oughton 89), Robbie Rogers, Pat Noonan (Guillermo Barros Schelotto 69), Alejandro Moreno.

Substitutes Not Used: Kevin Burns, Jason Garey, Alex Grendi, Alec Duffy.

TOTAL SHOTS: 10 (3 tied with 2); SHOTS ON GOAL: 5 (5 tied with 1); FOULS: 22 (Emmanuel Ekpo 4, Jed Zayner 4); OFFSIDES: 2 (Guillermo Barros Schelotto 1, Pat Noonan 1); CORNER KICKS: 3 (Eddie Gaven 2); SAVES: 1 (Andy Gruenebaum 1)

Seattle Sounders FC — Kasey Keller, James Riley, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Tyrone Marshall, Tyson Wahl, Brad Evans, Freddie Ljungberg, Peter Vagenas (Patrick Ianni 64), Steve Zakuani, Fredy Montero (Nathan Sturgis 89), Nate Jaqua (Sebastien Le Toux 83).

Substitutes Not Used: Stephen King, Roger Levesque, Sanna Nyassi, Ben Dragovan.

TOTAL SHOTS: 10 (Fredy Montero 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 2 (Nate Jaqua 1, Fredy Montero 1); FOULS: 14 (Jhon Kennedy Hurtado 3); OFFSIDES: 3 (Nate Jaqua 2); CORNER KICKS: 7 (Freddie Ljungberg 7); SAVES: 4 (Kasey Keller 4)

Misconduct Summary:
SEA — Peter Vagenas (caution; Unsporting Behavior) 37
SEA — Jhon Kennedy Hurtado (caution; Dissent) 68
CLB — Guillermo Barros Schelotto (caution; Unsporting Behavior) 73
CLB – Emmanuel Ekpo (caution; Unsporting Behavior) 73
SEA — Freddie Ljungberg (caution; Dissent) 89
SEA — Tyrone Marshall (ejection; Serious Foul Play) 92+

Referee: Michael Kennedy
Referee’s Assistants: -Emiliano Monje; David Bragg
4th Official: Alejandro Mariscal
Attendance: 29,126
Time of Game: 1:54
Weather: Sunny-and-72-degrees

This was the Sounders’ fifth straight draw drops them into third place in the Western Conference, now behind Chivas and Houston. It also drops them in history behind the 1998 Chicago Fire, whose 6-5 start now ranks as the best by an MLS expansion team after 11 games.

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Saturday comes: Crew at Sounders at 7:30

Here’s my preview story from today’s paper. And here’s the Crew coverage from the Columbus Dispatch.

And though Sigi Schmid’s Columbus connection makes for an interesting sidelight, the real importance seems to be that the Sounders are back home against a struggling team and they see this as a chance for three points and anything else will be a disappointment.

Especially because Chivas USA’s late and controversial loss to Chicago on Thursday really created an opportunity for the Sounders. Seattle will kick off tonight eight points behind Chivas — 24 points to 16 — in

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FA Cup final postgame report (Updated)

Here’s the game report. (I don’t want to give too much away for those who taped it, but I will say this: I hope your tape started right on time.)

And as I mentioned in my preview post, both sides are of special interest to Sounders fans, as Chelsea will play in Seattle on July 18, while Everton will meet the MLS all-stars July 29 at Sandy, Utah.

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Schmid scouts (brilliantly built) Columbus Crew

One of Sigi Schmid’ many charms is his ability to give nice clean clear scouting reports of each week’s opponents.

He did again today, starting with a little joke:

“Whoever put that team together originally did a good job.”

The joke, of course, is that Schmid was the guy who put most of this team together.

But that also makes his scouting report all the more interesting, because few people know this roster better than he does.

“They’re a good team,” he said. “They haven’t always gotten the results that they wanted this year, but

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Early scouting report on the Columbus Crew

I’m about to head out to Sounders training, and might pick up a news item or two there.

Meanwhile, here’s an early look at tomorrow’s game against the Columbus Crew.

COLUMBUS CREW (2-2-6; 10 pts.)

AT SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC (4-2-4; 16 pts.)

7:30 p.m. Saturday, Qwest Field.


Radio: 97.3 FM, and in Spanish on 1210 AM.

Head to head:
This is the first meeting. The Sounders will visit Columbus on Oct. 3.

Statistical leaders: For Columbus, G 6 Guillermo Barros Schelotto; A Emmanuel Ekpo; Sh 19 Schelotto/Ekpo; SOG 10

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Chicago gets past West-leading Chivas, 3-2

Fascinating game in a lot of ways. Three of the goals came on penalty kicks, including the game-winner in stoppage time. Chivas played a man down for the last half hour. The LA crowd seemed as eager to cheer Blanco — who scored two goals, both on PKs — than to cheer the home team. The Fire remains the only unbeaten team in MLS.

Here’s the game report from

But for all that, the bottom line is that the Sounders have a chance to pick up three points in the standings if they take care of

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Sigi focusing on his good times with Columbus

Thinking outside the box makes my head hurt, so I went with the obvious today and asked coach Sigi Schmid how he feels about going against his former team this weekend: the Columbus Crew, 7:30 p.m., at Qwest Field. And that topic also is the focus of my story in our Friday paper.

“I have a lot of friends there,” he said. “When you work with a staff for three years you obviously stay in contact. Because of the league rules you don’t want to be accused of tampering or anything like that, so you can’t stay in

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